Information from the museum, 1 September 2015
The Rockox House and the Royal Museum of Fine Arts Antwerp (KMSKA) are organising a series of small-scale exhibitions as part of the Golden Cabinet initiative. Power Flower, Floral still life in the Low Countries is the fifth in the series.
Since time immemorial, art in Flanders, Brabant and Holland has been characterised by incisive observation of nature and the quest for naturalness.
Despite that, until into the 16th century, plants and flowers were only to be seen adorning the margins of illustrations depicting saints in books of hours. The flourishing interest in the botanical world and the burgeoning fondness for things natural prompted early-seventeenth-century artists to regard bouquets of flowers as a self-contained motif.
It was a period in which artists were totally spellbound by the ‘Power Flower’ and were to be for many years to come. Jan Brueghel, Jan Davidz De Heem, Osias Beert, Daniël Seghers, Rachel Ruysch are just some of the many artists on proud floral display at this most sweet-scented of exhibitions.