Scheltens & Abbenes, 2008
At first glance, Bouquet V by Maurice Scheltens and Liesbeth Abbenes looks like a typical Dutch seventeenth-century still life. But like most floral still lifes from that time, this carefully arranged bouquet is far from realistic. Many seventeenth-century painters assembled bouquets in their paintings with an assortment of seasonal flowers, which could never flourish at the same time. Bouquet V is also an artistic construction: the duo cut all parts of the flower arrangement from books, magazines, and catalogs, which were accurately combined into a balanced composition. This two-dimensional construction was then photographed in a three-dimensional setting, distorting the viewers’ gaze and perception of reality. The still life we see is fake and real at the same time: although not quite what it seems, it is a true creation, not a digital tableau.
© Scheltens & Abbenes, courtesy of the Foam Collection