During the seventeenth century a form of still life called the vanitas developed as a means to impart an allegorical message about the inevitability of death. The subject here refers to Charles I’s troubled life and is a testament to the suddenness of death and the vanity of early power and glory. For example, the bubbles pertain to the brevity of Charles I’s life (he was beheaded at the age of 44), the broken skull conveys the fragility of human beings, and the globe symbolizes the power and possessions that death steals away.
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- Titles Allegory of Charles I of England and Henrietta of France in a Vanitas (Alternate)
- Artist Formerly attributed to, Carstian Luyckx (also Christian, Christiaan; and Luycks), Flemish, 17 August 1623 - after 1658 / Formerly attributed to, Simon Renard de Saint-André, French, 1613 - 1677
- Medium oil on canvas
- Dimensions 57 1/2 x 47 1/4 in. (146.1 x 120 cm) frame: 77 × 57 3/4 × 6 1/2 in. (195.6 × 146.7 × 16.5 cm)
- Credit Line Museum purchase with funds provided by Martee Woodward Webb; Mr. and Mrs. Edmund England; Dr. and Mrs. Rex Harris; Mrs. William McDonald, Jr.; Mr. and Mrs. Stewart M. Dansby; and Ms. Pauline Tutwiler, 1988.28
- Work Type painting
- Classification Paintings
- On View
- Provenance Robert Boulin, former Minister of Health, France . unknown dealer, Lyon . with Patrick Weiller, Paris, in 1985 ; sold at Sotheby's Monaco, Nov. 29-30, 1986, lot 344 ; Mrs. Alfred Taubman . Sotheby's New York, Jan 14, 1988, lot 188 (as by Renard de St. André); purchased by the Birmingham Museum of Art
 according to a memo from Douglas Hyland to Leslie dated May 15, 1989: Pierre Rosenberg conveyed that 1988.28 was in the collection of Robert Boulin (1920-1979) and that it may have been sold after his death, see object file.
 according to memo from Douglas Hyland dated 1/28/1988, see object file, based on info communicated by Patrick Weiller. This dealer had purchased the painting and cleaned it.
 according to a memo from Douglas Hyland dated Jan 28, 1988 the painting was offered to the museum by Weiller in 1985 for $100000. See object file.
 according to memo from Douglas Hyland, 1/28/1988 (sold in Monocco) and made $80000+. Sold as by Renard de St. André. See object file.
 according to memo from Douglas Hyland, dated 1/28/1988, the painting was damaged during shipment to New York City and Mrs. Taubman received compensation, and the painting was turned over to the insurance company, which subsequently put it up for auction. According to the memo, Patrick Weiller stated that the damage to the painting was minor. See object file.