Vase de fleurs (1861)

Fantin-Latour, Henri (1836-1904)

Vase de fleurs (Vase of Flowers)
Oil on canvas, 44.4 x 36 cm
Princeton University Art MuseumPrinceton

The painter and critic Jacques-Émile Blanche (1861–1942) compared Fantin-Latour’s studies of the flower—”its grain, its tissue”—to the observation of a human face. Indeed, although Fantin-Latour studied painting by copying the work of Old Masters, especially Venetian Renaissance painters, at the Louvre, he also brought to the genre of still-life a mastery of botany gained through close looking and a sense of quotidian reality that was especially appreciated by British collectors. Fantin was a painter’s painter, and his floral pieces especially appealed to those fellow artists and critics who emphasized artistic concerns over narrative subject matter. (PUAM)