Georg Flegel (1566 – 1638)
The small still life painted around 1630 is believed to be the work of an artist in the circle of Georg Flegel, considered the first German still life specialist, who was active in Frankfurt/Main from 1593. The artfully composed arrangement is a clear indication of the bourgeois wealth of a flourishing commercial town able to import luxury goods from far-away countries. The opened fruits and shellfish exhibiting their delectable interiors and the light reflexes and reflections on the glass and the edge of the plate also permit a metaphorical interpretation. According to the Neoplatonist teachings on beauty that were still current in the 17th century, an artwork was a microcosm mirroring a profound cosmic order. The luster of the objects bore witness to their part in the divine light. They revealed the harmony of all creation.