Department or Program


Primary Wellesley Thesis Advisor

Margaret Carroll


This work examines the relationship between the still lifes of Pieter Claesz, a seventeenth-century Haarlem painter, and Jean-Siméon Chardin, an eighteenth-century Parisian painter. In the absence of any truly developed theory of still life, Claesz and Chardin provide a commentary on still-life painting by reacting to the paintings of their predecessors. In doing so, these two artists attempted to elevate the genre of still life by foregrounding artistry through brushstroke and subject matter, creating still lifes that are more than pure imitation. The works of Claesz and Chardin show how still life can bring both creativity and skill into still life and create an intimate world for the viewer.