Luxurious Fine Art Habotai Silk Scarf from the new National Gallery Collection: Jan Van Kessel’s ‘Butterflies, Moths and Insects with Sprays of Common Hawthorn and Forget-Me-Not’


Treat yourself to a touch of luxury with this pure silk scarf from the new National Gallery Collection. Painted by the Antwerp artist Jan Van Kessel, it depicts his fine 17th century oil ‘Butterflies, Moths and Insects with Sprays of Common Hawthorn and Forget-Me-Not’, now in the National Gallery main collection. This delightful high quality habotai silk scarf with its luxurious sheen reveals a ‘cabinet of curiosities’—a delightful, lively scene of meticulously painted insects, flowers and berries on a creamy white ground, perfect to mirror the autumn scene and to complement the new autumn fashions.
Cabinets of curiosities, or Kunstkammern—encyclopaedic collections of natural objects and artworks—flourished in Renaissance Europe. They were regarded as a microcosm of the world, and Jan van Kessel’s compositions reflect the sense of discovery and the urge to collect that led to their creation. In this tiny still life oil on board, each specimen is carefully observed and identifiable. But this is no scientific illustration—the seemingly casual arrangement, the light effects and the shadows cast give these insects a remarkably lifelike appearance.
The black veined white butterfly balances on the leaf of a common hawthorn; a caterpillar and an earwig crawl along its woody sprig; a common blue butterfly sits on a different leaf, while another rests on one of the juicy red berries. Other insects proliferate—a hornet, a hoverfly, a tiger moth, more earwigs and a fire bug.
This delightful habotai silk scarf is large enough at 150cm x 35cm (59in x 12in) to drape beautifully and to twist around the neck.
RRP £40 plus delivery. CCUK £29.75. Free UK mainland delivery.