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Flowers in a Blue Vase

Adamson-Eric Flowers in a Blue Vase 1940 oil, cardboard 40.7 × 32.3 cm

Until the mid-1940s, the older school of Estonian painting was characterised by a search for idyll and oneness. Adamson-Eric had provoked audiences with his motifs on several occasions in the 1930s, but a large portion of his oeuvre also dealt with finding harmony in life. Depicting flowers or nature was one of the methods used to manifest that. Unlike many of his peers, Adamson-Eric had not been born in the country, and therefore his approach to nature was a bit more distanced. For him, flowers were more like a pretext for research into brushwork and colour. He has paid equal attention to the bouquet as he has to the vase or the tablecloth. An art album is barely discernible next to the vase. The latter motif is also familiar from older Estonian painting: artists would often include elements in the pictorial space which referred to painting or art in general (catalogues, brushes, picture frames, etc.) in order to emphasise the importance of art for the viewer.