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“Bouquet de Jonquilles” by Bernard Buffet

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Berard Buffet is a French expressionist artist, who is widely famous for austere figurative paintings. Although Abstact art dominated in middle of the 20th century, Buffet was a founding member of the anti-abstraction group L’Homme Témoin (“The Witness-Man”). “Bouquet de Jonquilles”, as many of his other still lifes, landscapes and portraits, is angular and geometric. Buffet’s art features thick, spiky black outlines, inter alia in the sharp style of his signature. Also, a restrained palette creates oppressive mood of the paintings, particularly swamp green color of the background for narcissists. The atmosphere of the alienation and anxiety of the post-war time served as a prerequisite for the stylistic choice of the artist.


The figurative flowers and even their stems and leaves have the hard contours. It creates the perception of precisely delineated position of each object in the space. Figures seem to be placed in stillness and immobility. Furthermore, vertical lines on the wallpaper correspond with multitude of straight lines inside the bouquet. Only flowers have naturally curved shapes. All this reflects to lifelessness and unnaturalness.


In the era when Abstraction was dominating in the art and among critics, Bernard Buffet argued for the representational art. The theme of flowers in a wase on the table was frequent. He worked on the same subjects, but tried to show them differently depending on the type and perception of the flowers. Unique flower scenes and attempts to transmit the flowers’ mood show Buffet’s evident delight in the beauty and variety of the nature. Narcissists seem to strive upward due to their form and thin stretched vase, that have vertical lines on the background. Downturned leaves slightly look like as unnatural legs of a strange creature. Flowers seem to be sharp and prickly.

Kings Gallery is a leading fine art gallery established in Jerusalem in 1995. We strive to collect and sell the highest quality historic and contemporary Israeli and International art. Especially the gallery specializes in artists from the early period of the 1920’s. In addition, Kings Gallery features leading up-and-coming young artists who will definitely be prominent names in the next few years.

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