Painted when Crespin was only twenty-three, this striking ‘nature-morte’ shows an artist mature beyond his years. It dates to the period in his life when he was in Paris studying as a pupil in Leon Bonnat’s atelier and shows more than a passing nod to the ideals of French Realism. Adolphe Crespin was born in the town of Anderlecht, close to Brussels, in 1859 and clearly showed an early aptitude for the arts. In 1877 he enrolled at the Academy of Brussels where his primary tutor was the Belgian figure painter Ernest Blanc-Garin. By 1883 he had established a studio in Brussels and had commenced his career as a professional oil painter. These early years were good to Crespin and his landscapes, figure subjects and still-lifes where well received by both the public and critics alike. By the turn of the century he had, for the most part, abandoned oil painting and was concentrating on poster and tapestry design as well as costume work for theatre and ballet. He enjoyed a long and successful association with the highly regarded architect Paul Hankar producing designs for ornamentation and architectural embellishments. His later years were mostly spent in academia as a professor of drawing at the Academy of Brussels as well as being on staff at the Bischoffsheim Institute and the L’Ecole de Saint-Josse-ten-Node. After an illustrious career in a variety of differing media, Adolphe Crespin died in Saint-Josse-ten-Node in 1944. Paintings by the artist can be seen today in the Belgian museums of Brussels, Ghent and Ixelles.