Still Life

Severin Roesen (Americam, born Germany, 1815 or 1816 - after 1872)

undated. Oil on canvas, 21 3/4 x 26 3/4". 1980.032

Severin Roesen, who was probably trained in Germany, was one of the more ambitious and prolific painters of still-lifes in mid-nineteenth-century America. In 1848, he immigrated to the United States, where he painted in New York and Pennsylvania. This still life, small by the artist’s usual measure, is typical of the good life in America. Everything is casually but artfully arranged. The compote, found in many of the artist’s paintings, is fanciful and amusing. Vines and stems tie the parts together and frame the whole. A single tendril extends over the ledge to form the artist’s signature with the initial S inside the R.

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