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Green Flowers was a rare still life from the career of French Naive artist, Henri Rousseau. It features the very same tones that made his jungle scenes so famous.
This painting is most likely to have been from around 1909-1910 as there was a similar artwork from this period titled Bouquet of Flowers. They feature a similar choice of flowers, just arranged slightly differently. The Bouquet of Flowers is a part of the UK Tate collection, but much less so is known about the artwork featured here. We do know that nature was a key part of Rousseau's inspiration as an artist and he regularly produced a unique style of landscape where animals were placed in jungle scenes. It is hard to remember any other famous painters who did this as effectively or frequently as Henri Rousseau.
Still life paintings of flowers in vases were most famously painted by Paul Cezanne, who also made use of fruit too on other occasions. Vincent van Gogh would also have a similar passion for this artistic genre though others sometimes considered it a little bit stale, and most suitable for learning technical skills rather than producing fully-fledged paintings. Perhaps the inventiveness of artists like Rousseau was required in order to create interest from what other wise might become somewhat bland.
This painting, as with all of Rousseau's paintings, features a standard signature in the bottom of the painting. Normally he would place it in the bottom right in white paint, but would sometimes diverge from this practice if necessary, perhaps due to the composition of the artwork or the colours used in each corner. His signature became instantly recognisable and its curving style even added to the expressive nature of his work.