DUTCH STILL LIFE ARTIST

Dutch still life paintings using classical technique by artist Tanja Möderscheim (London)

I am a Dutch fine artist based in London. I specialise in still life, working in a classical style using traditional technique. My close attention to detail and anatomy, nurtured by my background in science, is a nod to the interest in naturalism during the Dutch Golden Age. My still life paintings are harmonious and calm.

Focusing on everyday objects such as fruits, vegetables and tableware, my paintings interpret these subjects in the context of mood, light and space in order to convey a quiet state. Separate series of paintings explore heritage and history; for example, my cultural heritage project focuses on Dutch tulips from the 16th – 19th centuries. I source the bulbs from the gene bank Hortus Bulborum in Holland and grow them in my garden, resulting in annual series of heritage tulip paintings. My Delft Blue tableware paintings and paintings depicting Roman archaeological artifacts are also part of the heritage work. Culinary heritage is explored in paintings of artisans’ food produce, celebrating their products and role in local communities. As part of this I collaborated with the BBC Food and Farming Awards (2016) and in 2020 I’ll present my paintings of French artisans at the College Culinaire de France, a result of my collaboration with BonFond.

I exhibit regularly in between painting to commission. Key exhibitions include the Mall Galleries (RBA, SWA) and Affordable Art Fair.

 

Inspiration

Dutch Masters active during the first half of the 17th-Century Golden Age, working in the “ontbijt” or “breakfast” genre – handling of light and a subdued palette, e.g., Pieter Claesz. (c. 1597 – 1660), Willem Claesz Heda (c. 1593– c. 1682), Jan Jansz Treck (c1606 – 1652), Osias Beert (1580-1623). Painters of more recent times: Jean-Baptiste-Siméon Chardin, Henri Fantin-Latour and Claudio Bravo. Flower and game painters I very much admire include Willem van Aelst.

Technique: traditional technique involving grounding, dead-colouring, working up and glazing. Paintings on fine-weave linen or wood.

Composition: expressing a sense of calm, stillness and atmosphere through the use of ample space, design, harmony and simple colour schemes.

Studio view by Tanja Moderscheim

Bringing still life into J.M.W Turner’s House in Twickenham before the renovation (October 2015)