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Art History and Analysis Essay

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While Still life with Apples and a Pot of Primroses by Paul Cézanne and Still Life with a Skull and a Writing Quill by Pieter Claesz vary in time period, and therefore style and composition, the message they portray is similar. Cezanne and Claesz differ greatly in technique, more specifically in perspective, brush stroke, composition and realism. Their separation in time does account for the discrepancies in technique but surprisingly does not affect the subject and message.
The fact that Still life with Apples and a Pot of Primroses is a post-impressionistic piece effects its visual composition. Post Impressionism has a great influence on brush stroke and realism. This piece in particular features quick gestural brush strokes and is much more loosely painted than Still Life with a Skull and a Writing Quill. This piece also has an improper perspective, which is most noticeable when looking at the angle of the tabletop, and how every part of the plant faces forward and seems to be lurching out at the viewer. The viewer also has little to no knowledge of the space that is presented in the piece. For as much negative space this piece features, one would think the room would play a larger role compositionally. The techniques in post-impressionistic art were much more fluid and allowed for innovations such as variation in perspective, and more characterized brush strokes. All of these factors lend to a sense of artificiality in this piece. The plant on the left seems to be too stiff to be real. In fact Cezanne painted from an artificial plant and its stiff qualities were transmitted into this piece. Post-Impressionism, and its freedom and rejection of classicism allowed Cezanne to develop a style. A style clearly articulated in th...


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...go out, the flesh will rot and the quill will be laid down. We have a limited amount of time with earthly gifts we have been given and we are urged to repent before they fade before we have secured eternal life.






Work Cited
Pieter Claesz: Still Life with a Skull and a Writing Quill" (49.107) In Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art

"Paul Cézanne: Still Life with Apples and a Pot of Primroses" (51.112.1) In Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art
"Baroque (1600-1750)." Scholastic Publishes Literacy Resources and Children's Books for Kids of All Ages. N.p., Web. 13 Apr. 2014.
Eitner, Lorenz. Preface. An Outline of 19th Century European Painting: From David through Cézanne. N.p.: Westview, 1992. 7+. Print.
Rewald, John. The History of Impressionism. New York: Museum of Modern Art, 1973. Web.


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