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Edwaert Colyer

Still Life, ca. 1696

Oil on canvas
19 1/8 × 24 1/4 in
48.6 × 61.6 cm
Permanent collection
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About the work
Provenance
Medium
Painting
Image rights
Image provided by Indianapolis Museum of Art
Edwaert Colyer
Dutch, 1642–1708
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Edwaert Colyer—who later anglicized his Dutch name to Edward Collier—is renowned for his trompe-l'oeil paintings and symbolically morbid still lifes, but little else is known of the life of the enigmatic painter. Colyer spent time between Leiden, Haarlem, Amsterdam, and London, and belonged to many chapters of the St. Luke’s city artist guilds, during which he actively created his trompe-l’oeil paintings. In these paintings, Colyer tricks the eye by creating the illusion of three-dimensional objects upon flat canvases, such as renderings of letter racks that mimicked tangible items—newspapers, notes, quills, and stamps. The contents of his compositions were encoded with commentary and collectively formed an obscure discourse on politics, art, media, revolution, and the ephemeral nature of power, at times even containing papers inscribed with the artist’s name.

Save
Save
view
View in room
share
Share
Save
Save
view
View in room
share
Share
view more
About the work
Provenance
Medium
Painting
Image rights
Image provided by Indianapolis Museum of Art
Edwaert Colyer
Dutch, 1642–1708
Follow

Edwaert Colyer—who later anglicized his Dutch name to Edward Collier—is renowned for his trompe-l'oeil paintings and symbolically morbid still lifes, but little else is known of the life of the enigmatic painter. Colyer spent time between Leiden, Haarlem, Amsterdam, and London, and belonged to many chapters of the St. Luke’s city artist guilds, during which he actively created his trompe-l’oeil paintings. In these paintings, Colyer tricks the eye by creating the illusion of three-dimensional objects upon flat canvases, such as renderings of letter racks that mimicked tangible items—newspapers, notes, quills, and stamps. The contents of his compositions were encoded with commentary and collectively formed an obscure discourse on politics, art, media, revolution, and the ephemeral nature of power, at times even containing papers inscribed with the artist’s name.

Edwaert Colyer

Still Life, ca. 1696

Oil on canvas
19 1/8 × 24 1/4 in
48.6 × 61.6 cm
Permanent collection
Want to sell a work by this artist? Consign with Artsy.
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