Jacob Marell (1614-81), A Glass Vase with Flowers, c. 1669

Jacob Marrel (1614-81), A Glass Vase with Flowers, c. 1669. Oil on canvas. 34.5 x 26 cm. KMS767.
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The flowers parade themselves in their splendour, peeping out at us between brightly coloured petals as if to say “look at me, smell me”. Tulips, hyacinths, anemones, spring snowflakes, cowslips and fritillaries; these are all familiar spring flowers to us. Today they are commonplace, but in Jacob Marrel’s day such bulbs were rare and precious. Hyacinth and tulip bulbs were investment objects in The Netherlands, where Marrel spent much of his career.

Lucrative tulip mania
Like many other artists in The Netherlands he operated a sideline business in addition to painting. Marrel traded in tulip bulbs, recording all purchases and sales. When the tulip mania reached its greatest heights in 1636–37, Marrel could sell his bulbs at great profits.

Updated: 26.apr.2018
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