artincontext Main Index   |   Welcome   |   Register   |   Edit

Francisco de Zurbarán
A Cup of Water and a Rose
c. 1630
Oil on canvas

21.2 x 30.1 cm
Bought for the National Gallery by the George Beaumont Group, 1997

National Gallery, The

Excerpt from The National Gallery, London:

Although Zurbarán frequently included still life elements in his subject pictures, he painted very few independent still lifes. The motif of the cup of water on a silver plate with a rose appears in two religious subject paintings by him and in the celebrated Still Life with Basket of Oranges’ of 1633 (Norton Simon Museum, Pasadena). This work was probably painted in about 1630.

The silver plate is of a kind imported into Spain from Peru. Here the objects may be intended to have a symbolic character: the water in the cup perhaps refers to the Virgins purity and the flower recalls her title of Mystic Rose.

The canvas has been cut on three sides but the composition is likely to be substantially complete.


Additional Information

Francisco de Zurbarán: Selected Biographies on Art in Context

Francisco de Zurbarán: Related Links on Art in Context


Francisco de Zurbarán, Spanish, (1598-1664)
b. November 7, 1598, Fuente de Cantos, Spain
d. 1664

Art in Context - Projects:
Art in Context - Art for the Day: November 7

© 1995-2018 Art in Context Center for Communications. All rights reserved.