A Vase of Flowers

This painting was produced in Tahiti after Gauguin's final move there from France. It was sold by his friend Daniel de Monfreid in 1898 to Degas, who was an early admirer of Gauguin's art. Flower paintings were common among the painters of this period; Degas and Van Gogh are among the greatest exponents of the type.

The vase is decorated with only a pattern of gold lines and placed virtually in the centre of the painting, on a wooden ledge where pink and red blooms have fallen. The flowers form a relatively symmetrical pattern with broad blue leaves to each side of cream and red flowers. The muted colours of the background wall and the shelf act as a foil to the exotic flowers that are the central subject of the painting.

Key facts

Artist dates
1848 - 1903
Full title
A Vase of Flowers
Date made
Medium and support
Oil on canvas
64 x 74 cm
Inscription summary
Signed; Dated
Acquisition credit
Bought, 1918
Inventory number
Location in Gallery