, , , , , ,

This painting by the Italian artist Giovani Battista Ruoppolo (1629–1693) is in an unknown private collection. Ruoppolo was a Neapolitan painter, deeply influenced by Caravaggio. He painted still-life, especially fruit, in a manner reminiscent of the great Spanish still-life painters of the 17th century. His nephew and pupil Giuseppe (c. 1631-1710) painted in the same manner. I came across this work when I searched the web [1].


This oil-painting was made c. 1672 and depicts a fruit still-life. Upper left and lower right are the interesting malacological regions on this paintings. In total three land snails can be seen, likely all Helix-like (although one seems to have spiral bands only, the others having axial stripes). The shells are dextral and the animals are somewhat stylised, their smaller tentacles invisible in the dark tones of the shadows.


This is one of the relatively few examples of a still-life with land snails made by southern European painters.

[1] http://www.wga.hu/frames-e.html?/html/r/ruoppolo/stilfrui.html (29.iii.2014).