Cornelius Norbertus Gijsbrechts (c. 1610 - after 1675), Trompe l'oeil with Studio Wall and Vanitas Still Life, 1668
In addition to the signature ”C. N. Gysbrechts, F.A.O. 1668 ” the painting also bears the painter’s “calling
card” in the form of a note bearing the address ”A Monsuer / Monsuer Cornelius Norbertus / Gijsbrechts
Conterfeÿer ggl. In. / Coppenhagen.”
A vanitas still life
The painting shows a wooden wall with a canvas mounted on a temporary stretcher resting on a shelf that also bears the painter’s paraphernalia. The canvas shows a still life with symbols of death and resurrection, a so-called vanitas still life.
It was presumably this painting that secured Gijsbrechts the position as Court Painter to the Danish kings, first Frederic 3. (1609-1675) and later Christian 5. (1646-1699).
Trompe l'oeil (deception of the eye)
During his four-year sojourn in Copenhagen Gijsbrechts created an extraordinary series of paintings that aimed to convince spectators that they were facing real, three-dimensional objects rather than flat paintings. The genre is called trompe l’oeil (deception of the eye) and is typical of the Baroque style with its predilection for witty illusionism, metaphor, and allegory. The genre was also popular in the rest of Europe where princes and monarchs used such paintings to amuse diplomats and distinguished guests with their clever deceptions.
Close-up or another view
Here you can zoom-in on the work for a close-up view of all of the details. - Or you can gain a new understanding about the work by watching a film where the artist Kasper Bonnén talk about the work from his viewpoint.
Zoom and see the details
Cornelius Norbertus Gijsbrechts, Trompe l'oeil with Studio Wall and Vanitas Still Life, 1668.
The artist's view of the work – see the film
The artist Kasper Bonnén tells about Cornelius Norbertus Gijsbrechts' painting:Trompe l'oeil with Vanitas Still Life.
Producer: Martin Køhler Jørgensen
Contributory: Kasper Bonnén