The Frick’s High-Tech, Old Master Remix

by articulatenyc


Yesterday, an immaculate replica of Ambrosius Bosschaert’s Vase with Flowers in a Window (ca. 1618) appeared to come alive at the Frick Collection. Like a talking painting from Harry Potter, the flowers swayed with the wind and the daylight in the background grew brighter as time passed. Morning dew on the flowers evaporated. The water level in the vase slowly diminished. A snail in the lower-right corner of the composition emerged from his shell and leisurely inched his way out of the frame.

The work, titled Transforming Still Life Painting (2012), is a looping, 3-hour animated film by British artist-duo Rob and Nick Carter. The first digital artwork to ever be shown at the Frick, Transforming Still Life Painting simulates the effects that 24 hours of real-life elements—water, sunlight, wind—would have had on Bosschaert’s flowers. The film depicts the scene through a modern lens, just as Bosschaert’s original materials reflected his own time. “Computer-generated imagery is our form of reality,” says Nick. “This is what we see everyday.”

The piece is being presented in conjunction with the Frick’s new exhibition “Vermeer, Rembrandt, and Hals: Masterpieces of Dutch Painting from the Mauritshuis.” The show opens today and features a selection of paintings on loan from the Mauritshuis museum in the Hague, which is temporarily closed for renovations. The loan includes such treasured Golden-Age artworks as Vermeer’s Girl with a Pearl Earring (ca. 1665) and The Goldfinch (1654) by Carel Fabritius. Read the full article on!