“Naturmort with oysters,” Luis Melendez – overview of the painting

“Naturmort with oysters,” Luis Melendez – overview of the painting
“Naturmort with oysters,” Luis Melendez - overview of the painting - 1

  • Posted by Luis Melendez
  • Museum: Prado Museum
  • Year: 1772

Overview of the painting :

Still life with oysters – Louis Melendez. 1772. Oil on canvas. 41 x 62 cm.

   Anyone who believed that this outstanding and highly underestimated artist by contemporaries did an excellent job with the image of fruits and vegetables clearly did not see all of his work. He turned out to be a unique specialist in the transfer of various invoices. In this picture, he faced a very difficult task, because in addition to the already familiar wooden, metal and ceramic surfaces, he had to depict matte, porous egg shells, slippery oysters with liquid and their coarse outside and pearl, gentle, rounded sinks inside.

   The exceptional skill of the artist helped him successfully solve all the tasks set. In the picture, against the background of a massive table of old, cracked wood, simple objects of everyday life are located. This is a gross clay jug standing in the depths of the composition, with a wooden spoon sticking out of its neck. The hole in it is covered with a large ceramic skull. The jug is dark, almost matte and barely visible against the background of the same dark, devoid of brilliance and wall patterns. However, the master managed to ensure that the dishes did not lose their volume and clearly “read” against the background of the wall.

   The largest item is a golden golden metal brass mustache, standing somewhat sideways due to the fact that it is laid on an inverted small bowl of simple clay. The product attracts attention with its brilliance and color, large copper rivets are clearly visible against its background.

   Another important detail is an old shabby white ceramic plate with a thin blue border. It has clean white eggs, whose surface seems to be simply glowing due to the light falling on them.

   The main part of the composition, according to which it was named, is oysters. They are scattered throughout the canvas, their sinks are transfused, and the contents look very natural and juicy.

   The natural color scheme and the workshop for the transfer of textures makes these canvases very pleasant to the eye – they want to be constantly considered, revealing immediately unnoticed details.