Strawberries are in season! There are very few who dislike them, I know only two such people. I love everything about them, from texture, to smell, to taste. Painters also love the way they look, red and tiny they make the perfect object to study for still lives. Enjoy the feast!
Lucian Freud painted this life-size strawberry still life at the height of his fascination with the Old Masters. Indeed, he was so passionate that the then-director of the National Gallery Neil MacGregor granted him a 24/7 access so that he could enjoy the peace and quiet with his easel after midnight. This work was painted as a gift to Ann Rothermere who was Freud's patron and close friend (so close that Rothermere's lover Ian Fleming was jealous, but then they married in 1952).
From the 1900s Renoir lived in the Midi region in Southern France, in Cagnes-sur-Mer he built a house in 1908. His failing health constraint him to a chair, but he didn't stop to paint and focused on small format canvases of still lives.
During the summer of 1882 Manet lived in Rueil, near Paris, in a house with a garden from which he painted many views. He sadly had to limit himself, ill and old he managed to paint mostly small-scale studies of objects.
Louise Moillon was a French still-life painter in France whose speciality was the detailed and realistic rendering of fruit. She painted this marvellous painting when she was only 20 years old!
If you feel like continuing your seasonal painting feast, go for asparagus!