Vanitas (macabre) - A still life. A very, very still life. Simon Renard de St. André (1613 or 1614-1677) was a painter and copperplate engraver born in the 17th century in France. In his lifetime, he was regarded as a highly skilled portraitist.  He is remembered today for his vanitas paintings, which contain symbols that remind the viewer of the transcience of life and wealth.