Author: Stabrowski Kazimierz, 1869 - 1929
Created: before 1925.
Material / technique: paper, pastel.
Dimensions: 50x64 cm.
Signature: K. Stabrowski (in the bottom-right corner of the painting).
The painting depicts a bouquet of leaning rose petals. The contrast of red and florid flowers, green foliage and the neutral grey background form an impression of a stable composition. The outlines of the leaves and petals, which are painted in a Secession-like style. The graceful leaning of the plant and creative lines establish a vivid decorative tone. The top of the bouquet is adorned with roses in blossom. The flowers look strong, are large, bright, and fully open. As they lean down, they turn pale, wither, and disappear. The lowest leaning flowers look as if they are dissolving. The painter used this pastel method to create a sense of ephemerality: to convey the fragile state of the material world and the feeling of transience, which typically characterises the works of symbolists.
Reference: ‘Kazimierz Stabrowski, the Teacher of M. K. Čiurlionis’. Kaunas: M. K. Čiurlionis National Art Museum, 2016, Kat. Nr. 1, P. 40.
A visually ordinary pastel of a large bouquet of roses exudes sadness, because youth is so ephemeral, and because earthly beauty surrenders to rapidly passing time.The still-life by KAZIMIERZ STABROWSKI (1869–1929) shows how optimistic images of plenty unexpectedly approach the genre of vanitas, which is an ominous reminder of the impermanence of earthly reality. The Symbolists admired flowers, and fairy tales and myths were an inexaustable source of images and meanings to them; therefore, it is worth looking for connections with literature in Stabrowski’s work. To a romantic lover of poetry, this still-life of roses will easily bring back the lines from the poem by the 17th-century English poet Robert Herrick ‘To the Virgins to Make Much of Time’ from the book Hesperides (1648), which urges girls to enjoy the day, as beauty is fragile and its end may be right here, just over the threshold: ‘Gather ye rosebuds while ye may, / Old time is still a-flying; / And thissame flower that smiles today / To-morrow will be dying.’
Reference: Art Album “Objects on show” . Compiled by G. Jankevičiūtė. Vilnius, ELLEX VALIUNAS, 2017, P. 42.
Exhibitions: ‘Kazimierz Stabrowski, the Teacher of M. K. Čiurlionis’, 2015 September 24 - 2016 January 3, M. K. Čiurlionis National Art Museum,Kaunas; Exhibition of the Fine Arts Collection of Edmundas Armoška "Outcrops of Lithuanian Art 16th–21th Centuries" 2008 July 3 - August 31, Lithuanian Art Museum, Vilnius.
Published: Kazimierz Stabrowski, the Teacher of M. K. Čiurlionis’. Kaunas: M. K. Čiurlionis National Art Museum, 2016, Kat. Nr. 1, P. 40; Art Album “Objects on show”. Compiled by G. Jankevičiūtė. Vilnius, ELLEX VALIUNAS, 2017, P. 43, Cat. No. 115 P. 286.
Photograph: Kazimierz Stabrowski (1869–1929).