April 2021

Tulips from Amsterdam: Dutch flower painting in the 17th century

Welcome to The Arts Society North Bucks
Thursday, April 8, 2021 - 11:00

Dutch flower paintings were much admired in The Golden Age. Today we explore whether the images were realistic, or just an illusion?

The Golden Age saw an increasing specialism amongst Dutch artists. Flower still-life pieces were especially admired and some artists were able to demand high prices for their work, albeit not as high as the prices tulips fetched during the ‘tulipomania’ of the 1630s. It was a genre in which women artists could flourish: Rachel Ruysch, Maria von Oosterwyck.

Yet flower paintings are nowadays often taken at face value – wrongly. Did the floral arrangements which Dutch artists painted so realistically ever exist in reality? Or were they just an illusion, masterfully painted to cheat nature?

This lecture will be presented as a Zoom webinar. All members  will receive details of how to access it a few days before the due date. If you  do not receive the details, please contact the Membership Secretary.


Dr Sophie Oosterwijk

Born in Gouda (Netherlands). Has an MA and PhD in English Literature (Leiden), an MA in Medieval Studies (York) and a PhD in Art History (Leicester). Has taught at the universities of St Andrews, Leicester and Manchester, Sotheby’s Institute of Art, National Trust, V&A, U3A, WEA and other organisations, and organised many study days, tours and visits. Also a regular lecturer for Cambridge University and travel companies, and Honorary Research Fellow with the School of Art History at the University of St Andrews. Numerous publications.