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Paolo Porpora (1617-1673) was an Italian artist who made this oil paint on linen (H 125.5, W 175), which is now in the collection of the Musée des Beaux-Arts, Valence, France [1]. Porpora worked mainly in Naples, but joined the Roman Accademia di San Luca from 1656 to 1568, where he might be influenced by Netherlandish still life painters [2].

MBV_P135_

In this still life of flowers and sculptures, two snails are seen at left in the foreground. One has a uniformly whitish shell, the other has a brownish spiral band in the colour pattern. Both are dextral specimens, possibly of a Helix-like species.

MBV_P135_d

Notes:
[1] MBV, inv. P.135. Joconde | escargot (réponse #99).
[2] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paolo_Porpora.

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