Maria van Oosterwyck (Dutch, 1630-1693) A swag of roses, poppies, other flowers and berries

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Lot 84*
Maria van Oosterwyck
(Dutch, 1630-1693)
A swag of roses, poppies, other flowers and berries

Sold for £ 56,250 (US$ 76,749) inc. premium
Maria van Oosterwyck (Dutch, 1630-1693)
A swag of roses, poppies, other flowers and berries held by a blue ribbon suspended from a nail, with a butterfly
signed 'Maria von Oosterwyck' (lower right)
oil on panel
34 x 27cm (13 3/8 x 10 5/8in).

Footnotes

  • PROVENANCE
    Sale, Christie's, London, 30 November 1979, lot 113 (sold for £26,000).

    According to early accounts, Maria van Oosterwyck was taken by her father when she was quite young to the studio of Jan Davidsz de Heem, after which she developed a keen interest in flower painting. She later entered the latter's studio, where she worked for a number of years, between Delft and Utrecht. When de Heem moved to Antwerp, van Oosterwyck began working independently. She then moved to Amsterdam in the first part of the 1670s, where she settled and obtained the services of an agent to market her works abroad. Among her patrons were Louis XIV of France, the Holy Roman Emperor Leopold I, Augustus II the Strong of Poland and William III of England.

    Van Oosterwyck created floral paintings and still lifes with allegorical themes: deeply religious, her work often has allegorical elements. Besides traditional symbols, colours are also employed symbolically, with white denoting innocence, yellow divinity, and red martyrdom. Even the frequent insertion of butterflies refers to the Resurrection of Christ.

    There are very few existing works that have been identified as by van Oosterwyck. As in the present painting, the artist generally worked on a small format, since large works tended to limit sales opportunities to wealthier clients such as the church or the state. She used luminous colours, frequently on dark backgrounds, which highlighted the brilliance of the foregrounds, relating her work to the 16th century Dutch trompel'oeil tradition. Despite the success she achieved, Oosterwyck was denied membership in the painters' guild, because women were not allowed to join.
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