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Georgius Jacobus Johannes van Os, Fruit, Flowers and Game

Key facts
Full title Fruit, Flowers and Game
Artist Georgius Jacobus Johannes van Os
Artist dates 1782 - 1861
Date made about 1820
Medium and support Oil on mahogany
Dimensions 80.5 × 61.6 cm
Inscription summary Signed
Acquisition credit Bequeathed by W.W. Aston, 1919
Inventory number NG3226
Location Not on display
Collection Main Collection
Fruit, Flowers and Game
Georgius Jacobus Johannes van Os

An abundant display of fruit, vegetables, flowers and game birds is arranged across two levels, bridged by the partridge hanging from the barrel of a gun. Van Os has depicted all the different surface textures with exceptional skill, while the multilevel arrangement creates a dynamic flow within the composition.

The Dutch painter spent a large part of his career in Paris, where he worked for the famous Sèvres porcelain factory. He was celebrated for his magnificent still-life paintings that incorporated antique art objects – here, a Greek marble stela (memorial tablet) decorated with a carved bas-relief stands behind the piles of food. It depicts two followers of Bacchus, the ancient Greco-Roman god of wine; one is a satyr, a half-man, half-goat woodland creature.

The fruit, vegetables and hunted birds depicted all relate to autumn, as does the Bacchic theme. The painting may have been intended as an allegory of the season.

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