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PIETER CLAESZ.

STILL LIFE WITH WINE GOBLET AND OYSTERS, 1639

About the Artwork

Like many still-life painters, Claesz. favored particular kinds of objects. The plain foods that he painted—bread, fruit, and herring— were those found on the tables of all but the poorest families in the Dutch Republic. This composition also includes tobacco spilling from a cone of paper. The capacious wine-glass found in many of Claesz.'s paintings provides a strong vertical element that balances the basic horizontals of the composition; it also gives the artist the opportunity to explore the related effects of transparency, translucency, and reflection.

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