A Still Life of Flowers in an Urn with Two Figures, by Giuseppe Recco (1634-1695).

Oil on canvas, in a carved and giltwood frame, 256.5cm by 201cm. Signed: EQVES RECCUS.

In 1684, the painting, with its pair PIC314, was acquired by George Davies in Naples, for 400 ducats, for John, 5th Earl of Exeter (1648-1700), during his second Grand Tour.

The 1688 Burghley Inventory records: ‘My Lords Dressing Roome…..2 large peices of fruite & flowers in flower potts with black & Guilt frames by Reccus.’

The artist, who was born in Naples, specialised in painting still lifes and was one of the first Italian artists to move from flower painting to more mixed arrangements of animals, fish and utensils.

He worked for some time for Charles II of Spain, where the latter still lifes were extremely popular.


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