HABERT, François
(active mid-17th century in Paris)

Still-Life with Fruit

c. 1650
Oil on canvas, 92 x 115 cm
Private collection

This still-life displays a basket of grapes, a bowl of cherries, a silver-gilt columbine cup. It may be considered a 'pronkstilleven', an 'ostentatious' or 'sumptuous' piece, a type of still-life which was developed by Dutch artists such as Jan Davidsz. de Heem, Abraham van Beyeren and Willem Kalf, towards the middle of the seventeenth century. Valuable and rare objects, such as the silver-gilt cup and the blue and white porcelain bowls, often feature in works of this kind, and provided artists with the opportunity to demonstrate their technical mastery in rendering a wide range of textures and materials and the play of light across their varied surfaces. Such magnificent displays were generally set before a dark background, which only served to intensify the theatricality of their presentation.