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The Transience of All Earthly Things (Vanitas), c. 1660 (oil on canvas)

The Transience of All Earthly Things (Vanitas), c. 1660 (oil on canvas)


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The Transience of All Earthly Things (Vanitas), c. 1660 (oil on canvas)

XKH152627 The Transience of All Earthly Things (Vanitas), c.1660 (oil on canvas) by Valck, Adriaen de (1622-fl.76); 119x95 cm; Hamburger Kunsthalle, Hamburg, Germany; (add.info.: drawn self portrait of the painter; natural sciences represented by globe and Jacobs staff; ); Dutch, out of copyright

Media ID 12697281

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Flute Hour Glass Memento Mori Sketch Book Skull Choses Mortality Transitoriness Worldly Goods


The Transience of All Earthly Things (Vanitas), c. 1660

EDITORS COMMENTS
is a captivating oil painting by Adriaen de Valck that explores the profound concept of transitoriness and mortality. This thought-provoking artwork, measuring 119x95 cm, can be found at the Hamburger Kunsthalle in Hamburg, Germany. The composition features a variety of symbolic elements meticulously arranged to convey the fleeting nature of life. At its center lies a skull, an enduring symbol of death and decay. Adjacent to it are an hourglass and an extinguished candle, representing the passing of time and the inevitable end that awaits us all. Surrounding these morbid reminders are works of art, a musical instrument, a sketchbook, and other worldly goods - all serving as reminders that even our most cherished possessions will eventually fade away. A globe and Jacobs staff symbolize natural sciences while adding depth to this allegorical representation. Notably, de Valck includes his own self-portrait within this intricate tableau. By doing so, he invites viewers to contemplate their own mortality through his artistic lens. "The Transience of All Earthly Things (Vanitas)" serves as both a memento mori - reminding us of our finite existence - and an exploration into the brevity and fragility inherent in human life. Through this masterful work from centuries ago, we are reminded that everything on earth is transient; only memories remain eternal.

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