Vases, Vessels, Cutlery, and Cloth: Still Life Selections from the Johnson Collection

Spartanburg Art Museum, Spartanburg, South Carolina
October 22, 2013 – December 21, 2013

Often seen merely as a means for showcasing luscious fruits and flowers in still life compositions, commonplace table settings and housewares play a critical role as support structures within these works of art. While the themes of vanitas—the eternal truth that all things decay—and of natural abundance have been explored countless times within the genre, this exhibition asks the viewer to look beyond the organic and consider the all-too-easily overlooked man-made elements in still life art. An artist’s choice to depict a delicate glass vessel, brass cachepot, filigreed silver tray, or sturdy earthenware jug may offer telling commentary. Curated by TJC Collection Manager Sarah Tignor, the presentation features paintings by Lloyd Branson, Josephine Couper, Ella Hergesheimer, Frank London, Andrew Way, and Thomas Wightman.