HAINZ, Georg
(b. 1630, Altenau, d. 1688, Hamburg)

Cabinets of Curiosities

Oil on canvas, 115 x 93 cm
Kunsthalle, Hamburg

At the time, it was a royal passion to put together collections of "naturalia et artificialia" and to display them on shelves in "Kunstkammer" ("art cabinets"). The cabinets of curiosities (also known as Wunderkammer, Cabinets of Wonder, or wonder-rooms) were encyclopedic collections of types of objects belonging to natural history, geology, ethnography, archaeology, religious or historical relics, works of art (including cabinet paintings) and antiquities.

Georg Hainz was a German painter specialized in still-lifes. He often used real objects for his paintings, which he then depicted with artistic freedom. The present painting represents a special type of vanitas still-life.