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MFA Images: Feasts

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  • Luncheon Party in a Park

    Le Déjeuner de jambon

    about 1735
    Nicolas Lancret (French, 1690–1743)

    Description

    Provenance

    By 1756, Ange-Laurent de la Live de Jully (b. 1725 - d. 1770), Paris [see note 1]; March 5, 1770, La Live de Jully sale, lot 79, to Sevin (?) [see note 2]. Until 1790, Pierre-Louis Eveillard, Marquis de Livois (b. 1736 - d. 1790), Paris [see note 3]. M. le Marquis de la Rochefoucauld-Bayers, Paris [see note 4]. By 1909, David David-Weill (b. 1871 - d. 1952), Neuilly-sur-Seine, France [see note 5]; 1937, sold by David-Weill to Wildenstein and Company, New York [see note 6]; sold by Wildenstein to a private collector [see note 7]. By 1945, Jacques Helft Gallery, New York; February 1, 1945, sold by Jacques Helft to Forsyth Wickes (b. 1876 - d. 1964), New York and Newport, RI; 1965, bequest of Forsyth Wickes to the MFA. (Accession Date: January 8, 1969) NOTES: [1] In 1756, the painting was engraved by P. E. Moitte, who dedicated his work to La Live de Jully. The painting is also included in La Live de Jully's collection catalogue of 1764; see Colin B. Bailey, "Ange-Laurent de la Live de Jully: A Facsimile Reprint of the Catalogue Historique (1764) and the Catalogue Raisonné des Tableaux (March 5, 1770)" (New York, 1988), p. 37. It is a replica of a larger painting by Lancret, "Luncheon with Ham" (Chantilly, Musée Condé), commissioned by King Louis XV in 1735. It has been suggested that La Live de Jully commissioned the MFA painting, but given its approximate date this is not likely, as he was only ten years old in 1735. [2] The buyer's name is noted by Gabriel Henriot, "Collection David Weill," vol. 1, pt. 2 (Paris, 1927), p. 224. [3] The painting is said to have been no. 192 in Eveillard de Livois's posthumous inventory of 1791; see Henriot, 1927 (as above, n. 2). [4] Henriot, 1927 (as above, n. 2). [5] A label on the reverse of the painting indicates that David David-Weill lent it to an exhibition of French art in London, 1909. David-Weill was an important figure in the art world, forming a large collection of eighteenth-century French paintings and sculpture and other works of art, as well as serving as the President du Conseil des Musées de France. In 1937 he sold many objects from his collection to Wildenstein and Company (see below, n. 6). Subsequently, when France fell to Germany in 1940, David-Weill fled Paris. At this time, much of his collection was seized by the Nazis. Many of these objects were returned to him following the war. Because this painting had been sold to Wildenstein in 1937, it was not among David-Weill's possessions during World War II and was not subject to Nazi looting. [6] See "Sale of the David-Weill Collection," Art News, February 27, 1937, p. 12 and "David-Weill Pictures Come to New York," Art Digest, vol. 12, no. 3 (November 1, 1937), p. 13. [7] According to a letter of February 1, 1945 from Jacques Helft & Co. to Forsyth Wickes.

    Credit Line

    Bequest of Forsyth Wickes—The Forsyth Wickes Collection

    Details

    Dimensions

    54.1 x 46 cm (21 5/16 x 18 1/8 in.)

    Accession Number

    65.2649

    Medium or Technique

    Oil on canvas

    On View

    Robert and Ruth Remis Gallery (Gallery 244)

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    Europe

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  • Still Life with Stoneware Jug, Wine Glass, Herring, and Bread

    1642
    Pieter Claesz. (Dutch, about 1597–1660)

    Description

    Claesz. specialized in the monochrome “breakfast piece,” a type of still life that presents the makings of a modest meal, primarily in related shades of muted green, gray, and brown. He usually approached his subject from a low vantage point, created a sense of depth by overlapping objects and blurring the edges of those farther back. Knife handles often project over the edge of the table, extending the composition into the viewer’s own space; this device also creates a sense of instability that plays against the careful and harmonious arrangement of objects on the table.

    Inscription

    Center right: PC (monogram) / 1642

    Provenance

    Edward Wheelwright (b. 1824 - d. 1900), Boston; by inheritance to Mrs. Edward Wheelwright, Boston; 1913, bequest of Mrs. Edward Wheelwright to the MFA. (Accession Date: April 3, 1913)

    Credit Line

    Bequest of Mrs. Edward Wheelwright

    Details

    Dimensions

    29.8 x 35.8 cm (11 3/4 x 14 1/8 in.)

    Accession Number

    13.458

    Medium or Technique

    Oil on panel

    On View

    Robert and Ruth Remis Gallery (Gallery 244)

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    Europe

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  • Still Life with Silver Brandy Bowl, Wine Glass, Herring, and Bread

    1642
    Pieter Claesz. (Dutch, about 1597–1660)

    Description

    Claesz. specialized in the monochrome “breakfast piece,” a type of still life that presents the makings of a modest meal, primarily in related shades of muted green, gray, and brown. He usually approached his subject from a low vantage point, created a sense of depth by overlapping objects and blurring the edges of those farther back. Knife handles often project over the edge of the table, extending the composition into the viewer’s own space; this device also creates a sense of instability that plays against the careful and harmonious arrangement of objects on the table.

    Inscription

    Center left: PC (monogram) / 1642

    Provenance

    Edward Wheelwright (b. 1824 - d. 1900), Boston; by inheritance to Mrs. Edward Wheelwright, Boston; 1913, bequest of Mrs. Edward Wheelwright to the MFA. (Accession Date: April 3, 1913)

    Credit Line

    Bequest of Mrs. Edward Wheelwright

    Details

    Dimensions

    29.9 x 35.9 cm (11 3/4 x 14 1/8 in.)

    Accession Number

    13.459

    Medium or Technique

    Oil on panel

    On View

    Robert and Ruth Remis Gallery (Gallery 244)

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    Europe

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  • Still Life with Bread, Ham, Cheese, and Vegetables

    about 1772
    Luis Meléndez (Spanish, 1716–1780)

    Description

    The leading still-life painter of Spain during the eighteenth century, Meléndez was born in Naples and spent most of his student years in Rome. However, his still lifes have a sober yet sensuous realism characteristic of Spanish painting of the previous century. On a kitchen table are piled simple foodstuffs; every color and texture is precisely rendered, and the composition is woven together by curving lines and shapes. This painting and its companion, Still Life with Melon and Pears (MFA object no. 39.40), may be from a series of forty-five still lifes Meléndez painted for one of the royal palaces, intended to represent “every species of food produced in Spain.”

    Inscription

    Lower right, on edge of table: L. EG[...]O M.

    Provenance

    R.F. Ratcliff, England [see note 1]. Possibly Mrs. Olga Bode Matthiesen [see note 2]. By 1938, Matthiesen, Ltd., London; 1939, sold by Matthiesen to the MFA for $300. (Accession Date: February 9, 1939) NOTES: [1] Eleanor Tufts, "Luis Meléndez: Eighteenth-Century master of the Spanish Still Life with a Catalogue Raisonné (Columbia, MO: University of Missouri Press, 1985), 92, cat. no. 58. [2] According to information provided by the Matthiesen Gallery (December 1, 2005).

    Credit Line

    Margaret Curry Wyman Fund

    Details

    Dimensions

    61.9 x 85.1 cm (24 3/8 x 33 1/2 in.)

    Accession Number

    39.40

    Medium or Technique

    Oil on canvas

    On View

    European Painting Gallery (Gallery 249)

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    Europe

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  • Egg Salad

    about 1850
    Unidentified artist, American, mid-19th century (American)

    Description

    Provenance

    The artist; Mrs. Josefa Kress, Berkeley, CA; with A. F. Mondschein, New York, 1944; to Maxim Karolik, Newport, R.I., 1944; to MFA, 1947, gift of Martha C.(Mrs. Maxim) Karolik.

    Credit Line

    Gift of Martha C. Karolik for the M. and M. Karolik Collection of American Paintings, 1815–1865

    Details

    Dimensions

    21.59 x 28.57 cm (8 1/2 x 11 1/4 in.)

    Accession Number

    47.1220

    Medium or Technique

    Oil on canvas

    Not On View

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    Americas

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  • Still Life with Sweetmeats

    Unidentified artist, Spanish, 17th century (Spanish)

    Description

    The friezelike arrangement of tipped and propped confections suggests a display in a shop window. The boxes hold glazed fruit and candy and sticks of brown sugar; in the center is a broken piece of gingerbread. At the time this picture was painted, Spanish colonies on the islands of the Caribbean led the world in the production and export of sugar. Rare and expensive, sugar was available only to the privileged few, and this modest image by an unknown artist may have been understood as a status symbol or even as a proud reminder of Spain’s preeminence among European powers.

    Provenance

    Anonymous collection, Spain. Anonymous dealer, Switzerland; sold by this dealer to Frederick Mont, New York; 1962, sold by Mont to the MFA for $7,000 [see note 1]. (Accession Date: February 14, 1962) NOTES: [1] In a letter to the MFA (October 26, 1962), Mont said that "the painting comes from Spain. We purchased it from an agent in Switzerland."

    Credit Line

    M. Theresa B. Hopkins Fund

    Details

    Dimensions

    39.7 x 72.1 cm (15 5/8 x 28 3/8 in.)

    Accession Number

    62.172

    Medium or Technique

    Oil on canvas

    Not On View

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    Europe

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  • Still Life with Wine Bottles and Basket of Fruit

    1857
    John F. Francis (American, 1808–1886 American)

    Description

    John F. Francis was one of the leading still-life painters in mid-nineteenth century America. He had been an itinerant portraitist [47.1142] during the 1830s and 1840s, but he turned to still-life painting in the 1850s when there was a growing demand for such images. By that time, general prosperity and a better-educated populace prompted more Americans to decorate their homes with paintings. From 1838 to 1852, the exhibitions and lotteries of art unions had increased art ownership throughout the nation and expanded the general public’s appreciation of genres other than portraiture. The sale of still lifes was further stimulated by the arrival of such European émigrés as SeverinRoesen [69.1228], who brought Old World still-life styles with them. In addition, Francis was from the Philadelphia area, and was likely aware of the local tradition of still-life painting by members of the Peale family [1979.520].
    Still Life with Wine Bottles and Basket of Fruit is one of Francis’s finest still lifes. He chose dessert food and beverages as the subjects for most of his canvases, generally placing the objects on a table before a neutral background, although in his later work he sometimes inserted a window with a landscape. Fruit and nuts ended many a celebratory meal in style; cheese had begun to be a part of dessert in the early nineteenth century, and champagne was often served between dinner and dessert. [1]In a show of unrestrained abundance, Francis included a bottle of sparkling wine with appropriate tall, slender glasses; another bottle that perhaps contains a fortified wine, such as port or sherry, with short, flared glasses; a blue and white pitcher trimmed with gold; a glass of water (commonly served in the best houses by the early nineteenth century, but possibly also a reference to the temperance movement that had been growing in strength during the 1840s); a plate of cheese; a basket of fruit partially covered with a fringed cloth; an elegant knife; and oyster crackers and nuts strewn over the cloth-covered table. The objects are rhythmically arranged, especially the glasses, which seem like musical notes on a staff. A pleasing array of rounded shapes is offset by the graceful silhouettes of the wine glasses. A variety of textures evoke the sense of touch—cool, brittle glass; moist cheese; crumbly crackers; hard nuts; soft fabric—and the cheese and opened oranges appeal to the sense of smell. Francis chose a warm palette of tawny yellows and tans, darker browns and oranges, offset by the light blue of the pitcher and trim of the fringed cloth. This sumptuous array of food, liquor, and fine tableware suggests a special occasion or a lavish dessert.

    Paintings like Still Life with Wine Bottles and Basket of Fruit must have been popular with art patrons, since Francis used the same objects in other still lifes. Still Life—Grapes in Dish (1850s, Newark Museum, New Jersey) is very similar to the MFA’s painting, although the fruit is in a compote rather than a basket and the objects are arrayed in a different pattern. Francis’s penchant for reusing a small number of objects for his paintings prompted the observation that he “exploits the smallest repertoire of any important American still life painter.”[2]

    Francis may have exhibited Still Life with Wine Bottles and Basket of Fruit at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts in 1858 under the title Champagne Lunch and Tropical Fruit (oranges were considered tropical at the time, though they are now categorized as subtropical). Sometime thereafter it was purchased by Reuben R. Springer (1800–1884), a Cincinnati businessman and philanthropist best known as the founder of the Music Hall in that city. It is not surprising that Francis’s vision of abundance and celebration might have appealed to this public-spirited citizen who acquired his wealth through the grocery trade and wise investments. Still Life with Wine Bottles and Basket of Fruit joined a collection that included both European and American paintings, which Springer bequeathed to the Cincinnati Art Museum in 1884. The Cincinnati Art Museum later deaccessioned Still Life with Wine Bottles and Basket of Fruit; when it appeared on the New York art market in the 1940s, Maxim Karolik bought it, along with Francis’s Three Children [47.1142] and Still Life with Chestnuts and Apples [47.1145], for the MFA.

    Notes
    1. Louise Conway Belden, The Festive Tradition: Table Decoration and Desserts in America, 1650–1900 (New York: W.W. Norton and Company, 1983), 228–35.
    2.Alfred Frankenstein, After the Hunt: William Harnett and Other American Still Life Painters 1870–1900, (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1953), 137.

    Janet L. Comey

    Inscription

    Lower right: J.F. Francis. Pt. 1857.-

    Provenance

    After 1858, Reuben R. Springer (1800-1884), Cincinnati, Ohio; 1884, bequest of Reuben R. Springer to the Cincinnati Museum Association. With Coleman Auction Galleries, New York. 1946, with Victor Spark, New York; 1946, sold by Victor Spark to Maxim Karolik, Newport, R.I.; 1947, gift of Maxim Karolik to the MFA. (Accession Date: June 12, 1947)

    Credit Line

    Gift of Maxim Karolik for the M. and M. Karolik Collection of American Paintings, 1815–1865

    Details

    Dimensions

    63.82 x 76.2 cm (25 1/8 x 30 in.)

    Accession Number

    47.1170

    Medium or Technique

    Oil on canvas

    On View

    The Heide Family Galleries (Gallery 238B)

    Collections

    Americas

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  • A Lunch

    1876
    William Michael Harnett (American (born in Ireland), 1848–1892 American)

    Description

    Provenance

    The artist; private collection; with Sotheby's, November 30, 1989, lot 6 (as "Still Life with Raisincake, Fruit and Wine"); to private collection, Hillsborough, North Carolina; with Sotheby's, Dec.1, 1994 lot 136 (as "Still Life with Raisincake, Fruit and Wine"); to private collection, Houston; with Michael Altman, New York (as "Spanish Souvenirs"); to MFA, 1999, purchase.

    Credit Line

    Charles H. Bayley Picture and Painting Fund

    Details

    Dimensions

    51.18 x 41.02 cm (20 1/8 x 16 1/8 in.)

    Accession Number

    1999.257

    Medium or Technique

    Oil on canvas

    Not On View

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    Americas

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  • Twelfth-Night Feast

    1662
    Jan Havicksz. Steen (Dutch, 1626–1679)

    Description

    Twelfth Night is observed in early January, marking the end of the Christmas season and beginning of Epiphany. It celebrates the arrival (twelve days after Christ’s birth) of the Three Kings, led by a star to the newborn Jesus. Here Steen depicts the jovial atmosphere of a prosperous Dutch family’s celebrations. Notice the painting’s many details: egg shells litter the floor where children play with candles symbolic of the Kings, while at the table, adults carouse as a boy offers the little “king” a bite of his holiday waffle.

    Inscription

    Lower center, on bench: JSteen / 1662 (J and S joined)

    Provenance

    1667, probably Hendrick Bugge van Ring (d. 1667), Leyden [see note 1]. 1806, possibly George Crawford, London; April 26, 1806, possibly Crawford sale, Christie's, London, lot 23, to Jackson, Chelsea; April 8, 1807, possibly Jackson sale, Christie's, London, lot 117, bought in [see note 2]. 1931, Henry Hirsch, London; June 12, 1931, Hirsch sale, Christie's, London, lot 22, bought in; May 11, 1934, Hirsch sale, Christie's, London, lot 144, to H. van Praagh, The Hague [see note 3]. August, 1934, Firma D. Katz, Dieren, near Arnhem [see note 4]. December, 1934, private collection, The Netherlands [see note 5]. By 1938 until at least 1944, Mrs. Jacques Coenraad (Elisabeth Hijman) Hartogs (b. 1871 - d. 1958), Arnhem [see note 6]; February, 1953, sold by Van den Bergh (probably Regina Freund Van den Bergh), London, to Schaeffer Galleries, New York (stock no. 1544) [see note 7]; 1954, sold by Schaeffer Galleries to the MFA for $45,000. (Accession Date: March 11, 1954) NOTES: [1] In the 1667 inventory of Hendrick Bugge van Ring's collection is "a large piece being a merrymaking on Three Kings' evening" by Jan Steen. The painting at the MFA is the only version of the theme Steen painted before 1667 that can be described as large, and is therefore probably the one listed. See Mariët Westermann, "The Amusements of Jan Steen: Comic Painting in the Seventeenth Century" (Zwolle: Waanders, 1997), p. 64. It was not, however, in the 1710 inventory of Hendrick's grandson, Jacob van Ring. [2] At the time the painting was acquired it was identified with Steen's version of the theme from the Craufurd (or Crawford) collection, described in the 1806 sale catalogue as "'Le Roi boit.' A domestic scene of mirth and noise; recommended by diversity and strength of character and infinite humour. The execution is in his most vigorous style. Truly capital." Since the dimensions of this painting are not given it is difficult to identify it securely with the MFA version. [3] The buyer's name is annotated in a copy of the sale catalogue. [4] The painting was included in the exhibition "Tentoonstelling van Schilderijen door oud Hollandsche en Vlaamsche meesters uit de collectie Katz te Dieren" (Koninklijke Kunstzaal Kleykamp, The Hague, 1934), cat. no. 59 (to which the introduction was written in August, 1934). Information from a photograph on file at the Witt Library, Courtauld Institute of Art, London, indicates that Katz was the owner of the painting in 1935; however, this has not been verified. The painting was lent from a private collection to the Boymans Museum from December, 1934 to January, 1935 (see below, n. 5). [5] The painting was lent from an anonymous private collection to the "Tentoonstelling van oude en moderne schilderijen" (Museum Boymans, Rotterdam, December 1934 - January 1935), cat. no. 18. [6] The painting was first lent under Mrs. Hartogs's name to the exhibition "Meesterwerken uit vier eeuwen" (Museum Boymans, Rotterdam, June 25 - October 15, 1938), cat. no. 146. She lent it subsequently to the New York World's Fair (May - October, 1939, cat. no. 362) and "Loan Exhibition of Great Paintings. Five Centuries of Dutch Art" (Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, March 9 - April 9, 1944, cat. no. 70). [7] Though she remained childless, Mrs. Hartogs had two foster daughters, Carla and Regina Freund, who married Frits van den Bergh and Jaap van den Bergh, respectively. Further information is available at http://www.myheritage.nl/person-1000646_27335922_27335922/jacques-coenraad-hartogs; see in particular the essay by Nechamah Mayer-Hirsch.

    Credit Line

    1951 Purchase Fund

    Details

    Dimensions

    Overall: 131.1 x 164.5cm (51 5/8 x 64 3/4in.) Framed: 155.6 x 188.6 cm (61 1/4 x 74 1/4 in.)

    Accession Number

    54.102

    Medium or Technique

    Oil on canvas

    On View

    Art of the Netherlands in the 17th Century Gallery (Gallery 242)

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  • The Kitchen Table

    17[55?]
    Jean Siméon Chardin (French, 1699–1779)

    Description

    This still life of humble kitchen wares, and another depicting elegant serving utensils, were exhibited as a pair at the Salon of 1757. Close examination reveals that Chardin changed the position of many objects as he painted, evidence of his painstaking craftsmanship and determination to create harmonious balance in what appear to be casual groupings. The reworking of the mortar and pestle at the right is most apparent to the naked eye.

    Signed

    Lower right: Chardin / 17[55?]

    Provenance

    1757, Ange-Laurent de La Live de Jully (b. 1725 - d. 1770), Paris (probably original commission) [see note 1]. By 1779, Johann Anton de Peters (b. 1725 - d. 1795), Cologne and Paris; March 9, 1779, Peters sale, Remy and Basan, Paris, lot 104 (bought in for 130.1 livres) [see note 2]; by descent to Mme. Johann Anton (Elisabeth Marie Gouel de Villebrune) de Peters (b. 1738 - d. 1785), Paris; November 9, 1787, Mme. de Peters estate sale, Le Brun, Paris, lot 165 (bought in for 98 livres). May 2, 1791, du Charteaux estate and others sale, Le Brun, Paris, lot 146, to Sollier for Pierre Remy (b. 1715 - d. 1797), Paris, for 100 livres. Cesar-Louis-Marie Villeminot (b. 1749 - d. 1807), Paris; May 25, 1807, posthumous Villeminot sale, Paillet, Paris, lot 13, to Pierre-Joseph Renoult (b. 1760), Paris, for 23.95 francs. Peter Chardon Brooks (b. 1798 - d. 1880), Boston; by inheritance to Mrs. Peter Chardon (Susan Oliver Heard) Brooks (b. 1806 - 1884), Boston; 1880, gift of Mrs. Peter Chardon Brooks to the MFA. (Accession date: October 16, 1880) NOTES: [1] La Live de Jully owned the painting at the time of the 1757 Salon, where it was exhibited (no. 33). The 1791 Le Brun auction catalogue indicates that the painting and its companion piece "were made with care for Juli de La Live." See Pierre Rosenberg, "Chardin 1699-1779" (Cleveland, 1979), p. 305. [2] From 1779 to 1807, the painting was sold in the same lot as its companion piece, "Butler's Pantry Table" by Chardin, with the exception of the 1787 de Peters estate sale, when it was sold alone. See Eric M. Zafran, "French Paintings in the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston" (Boston, 1998), pp. 94-97.

    Credit Line

    Gift of Mrs. Peter Chardon Brooks

    Details

    Dimensions

    39.7 x 47.6 cm (15 5/8 x 18 3/4 in.)

    Accession Number

    80.512

    Medium or Technique

    Oil on canvas

    On View

    Robert and Ruth Remis Gallery (Gallery 244)

    Collections

    Europe

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  • Breakfast Still Life with Glass and Metalwork

    about 1637–39
    Jan Jansz. den Uyl (Dutch, 1595 or 1596–1639 or 1640)

    Description

    What appears to be a haphazard arrangement of precariously balanced objects on rumpled white linen is in fact a carefully structured composition, culminating in the Venetian goblet framed by the niche. Placed among splendid objects of pewter, glass, porcelain, and gold-plate, the extinguished candle and the pocket watch on a silk ribbon may be symbols of death and passing time. Den Uyl’s name in Dutch means owl. He often “signed” his paintings with hidden images of owls, and one can be discovered here on top of the handle of the large pewter flagon at left.

    Provenance

    1926, Linnartz, Schloss Schlesisch-Nettkow, Germany; March 23, 1926, Linnartz sale, Lepke, Berlin, lot 117 [see note 1]; May 24, 1927, sold by Lepke, Berlin to Pieter de Boer, Amsterdam; 1927, sold by de Boer to Jacques Goudstikker, Amsterdam; November 14, 1927, sold by Goudstikker to Julius Böhler, Munich (stock no. 27,235); March 12, 1930, sold by Böhler to Böhler and Steinmeyer, Lucerne [see note 2]; May 24, 1930, sold by Böhler and Steinmeyer to Charles Bain Hoyt (b. 1889 - d. 1949), Lucerne and New York; from Hoyt to an anonymous donor; 1954, anonymous gift to the MFA. (Accession Date: December 8, 1954) NOTES: [1] Attributed in the catalogue to W. C. Heda. [2] Julius Böhler co-founded Böhler and Steinmeyer.

    Credit Line

    Anonymous gift

    Details

    Dimensions

    130.5 x 115.5 cm (51 3/8 x 45 1/2 in.)

    Accession Number

    54.1606

    Medium or Technique

    Oil on panel

    On View

    Art of the Netherlands in the 17th Century Gallery (Gallery 242)

    Collections

    Europe

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    Panels

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  • Still Life with Wine Goblet and Oysters

    1630s
    Pieter Claesz. (Dutch, about 1597–1660)

    Description

    Like many still-life painters, Claesz. favored particular kinds of objects. The plain foods that he painted—bread, fruit, and herring— were those found on the tables of all but the poorest families in the Dutch Republic. This composition also includes tobacco spilling from a cone of paper. The capacious wine-glass found in many of Claesz.’s paintings provides a strong vertical element that balances the basic horizontals of the composition; it also gives the artist the opportunity to explore the related effects of transparency, translucency, and reflection.

    Inscription

    Center left: PC (monogram) / 163 [...]

    Provenance

    Galerie Sedelmeyer, Paris [see note 1]; probably sold by Sedelmeyer to Francis Bunker Greene (b. 1844 - d. 1911) and his wife, Rebecca Andrews Greene (b. 1841 - d. 1905), Boston; about 1911, by descent to James Russell Chapman (b. 1851), Santa Barbara, CA; about 1938, to his daughter, Mary Chapman (Mrs. Hans Paul) Ahrnke (b. 1880), Lafayette, CA [see note 2]; 1956, gift of Mrs. Ahrnke to the MFA. (Accession Date: November 8, 1956) NOTES: [1] A wax seal from the Galerie Sedelmeyer is on the reverse of the painting. The Greenes are known to have purchased at least one other Dutch painting from Sedelmeyer (MFA accession no. 11.1452). [2] According to information provided by Mrs. Ahrnke in 1957, the painting passed from her great aunt, Mrs. Greene, to her father in Santa Barbara, California, who owned it for twenty-seven years. Mrs. Ahrnke owned it for eighteen years before giving it to the MFA.

    Credit Line

    Gift of Mrs. H. P. Ahrnke in memory of her great-aunt Mrs. Francis B. Greene

    Details

    Dimensions

    50.2 x 70.1 cm (19 3/4 x 27 5/8 in.)

    Accession Number

    56.883

    Medium or Technique

    Oil on panel

    Not On View

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    Europe

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  • Still Life with Carp

    Pierre Nichon (French (Dijonnais), active in 1645–1655), After Sebastian Stoskopff (German, about 1596–1657)

    Description

    After a painting in the Musée de Clamecy at Nevers

    Signed

    Lower left: P Nichon F

    Provenance

    Art dealer, Dijon; by 1951, sold by the dealer to Jean Neger, Paris; sold by Neger to an unknown art dealer [see note 1]. Private collection, Paris [see note 2]. 1963, Heim Gallery, Paris; 1963, sold by Heim to the MFA for $5,000. (Accession Date: November 13, 1963) NOTES: [1] Neger, an art dealer, lent the painting to the exhibition "Natures Mortes Françaises du XVIIème Siècle à nos jours" (Galerie Charpentier, Paris, 1951), no. 129, according to a letter from Colette Ducluzeau, Galerie Charpentier (October 1, 1964). Ms. Ducluzeau indicated that Neger said he acquired the painting from a small dealer in Dijon and sold it to another dealer. In a letter to the MFA (July 26, 1964), Dirk Hannema said that he recalled seeing "two still lifes of the same subject with the art dealer Neger" in 1949, but he did not identify either one with the MFA composition. He also said he believed that the MFA painting was once in the R. Payelle collection, a suggestion which has been repeated in literature on the picture. However, the Payelle painting was sold November 23, 1972, Palais Galliera, Paris, lot 46, and therefore cannot be identical with the one at the MFA, acquired in 1963. See Pierre Rosenberg, "France in the Golden Age: A Postscript," Metropolitan Museum of Art Journal 17 (1982): p. 32, cat. no. 75. [2] According to information provided by Heim at the time of the painting's acquisition.

    Credit Line

    Francis Welch Fund

    Details

    Dimensions

    49.21 x 59.05 cm (19 3/8 x 23 1/4 in.)

    Accession Number

    63.1628

    Medium or Technique

    Oil on canvas

    On View

    Jean S. and Frederic A. Sharf Visitor Center ( 130.10)

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  • The Tea Party

    about 1824
    Henry Sargent (American, 1770–1845)

    Description

    Entrepreneur and artist David Brown commissioned Henry Sargent to paint The Tea Party following his successful public display of Sargent’s The Dinner Party [19.13], hoping this second interior would prove equally popular. The Tea Party was first shown (together with the earlier dinner scene) in Boston around May 1824 and over the next decade Brown toured the pair of canvases repeatedly, bringing them to New York, Philadelphia, and Montreal.

    The casual deportment of mixed company in The Tea Party makes this composition an appropriate pendant to the more formal arrangement of The Dinner Party. Like The Dinner Party, The Tea Party may represent Sargent’s own home in the Tontine Crescent, a row of handsome Boston townhouses (no longer extant) designed and built by Charles Bulfinch in 1793–94. One contemporary critic noted: “The rooms and furniture [are] delightfully painted, and with the most minute fidelity.” [1] This is an upper-class interior, with two richly appointed parlors filled with fashionably attired figures. The women wear stylish Empire gowns in colors suitable for daytime; white garments were reserved for evening, as they were difficult to keep pristine. The furnishings reflect the latest styles recommended by such tastemakers as English designer Thomas Sheraton, who advised that the drawing room was to include the finest furniture and decorations in the house. [2] Sargent carefully delineated the French-styled Empire armchairs and a marble-topped center table toward the middle of the first parlor; the table may be one that descended in the Sargent family and is now in the collection of the Walters Art Gallery in Baltimore. Other imported and domestic goods are displayed around the two rooms, including an alabaster vase on a stand in the corner at the left, mirrors that help to reflect the warm artificial light in both spaces, and vases and urns on the mantelpiece. The walls of the room are lined with paintings—likely some landscapes, a subject that Americans were just beginning to collect.

    Both The Tea Party and The Dinner Party were reacquired by the artist from Brown before 1842, when Sargent displayed one of them in the first exhibition to be held at Chester Harding’s Boston gallery. The two paintings remained in the Sargent family after the artist’s death and were given to the MFA in 1919.

    Notes
    1. Editorial, Columbian Centinel, May 8, 1824, quoted in Jane C. Nylander, “Henry Sargent’s Dinner Party and Tea Party,” Magazine Antiques, May 1982, 1176.
    2. Nylander, “Henry Sargent’s Dinner Party and Tea Party,” 1180.

    Karen E. Quinn

    Provenance

    About 1824, commissioned by David L. Brown, Boston; before 1842, sold back to the artist (1770-1845); by descent to the artist's grandson, Winthrop Henry Sargent (1840-1916), Boston; by descent to his wife, Aimee Rotch Sargent (1852-1918), Boston; by descent to her sister, Annie Lawrence Rotch (Mrs. Horatio A.) Lamb (born 1857), Milton, Mass.; 1919, gift of Mrs. Horatio A. Lamb to the MFA. (Accession Date: February 6, 1919)

    Credit Line

    Gift of Mrs. Horatio Appleton Lamb in memory of Mr. and Mrs. Winthrop Sargent

    Details

    Dimensions

    163.51 x 133.03 cm (64 3/8 x 52 3/8 in.)

    Accession Number

    19.12

    Medium or Technique

    Oil on canvas

    On View

    Prudence S. and William M. Crozier, Jr. Gallery (Gallery 121)

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    Americas

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  • The Dinner Party

    about 1821
    Henry Sargent (American, 1770–1845)

    Description

    Henry Sargent’s painting gives us a glimpse of a fashionable dinner party in 1820s Boston. The dishes for the main course have been cleared; the tablecloth has been removed; and nuts, fruit, and wine are being offered for dessert. The single candle on the table is provided to enable the diners to light their tobacco. The shutters are drawn to keep out the sun, for during this period dinner parties were held in the middle of the afternoon. This gathering may represent a meeting of a specific group: the Wednesday Evening Club, which met weekly for dinner and discussion at members’ houses. The club, which survives today, consisted in Sargent’s time of four clergymen, four doctors, four lawyers, and four “merchants, manufacturers or gentlemen of literature and leisure.”[1]Guests were sometimes included at the dinners, which would explain why there are more than sixteen in attendance here. Sargent, possibly the third figure on the right side of the table, was a successful politician and inventor as well as a talented painter, and he may well have belonged to the club; however, no membership records were kept at this time, so it is not certain what convivial gathering is represented here.
    In addition to being an invaluable document of social customs among Federal Boston’s elite, the painting preserves the appearance of an upper-class interior. This elegant room was probably Sargent’s own dining room at 10 Franklin Place on Tontine Crescent, a handsome row of townhouses built by celebrated architect Charles Bulfinch in 1793–94. The contents of the room—the sideboard (a new form whose serpentine front allowed diners to reach across it with ease), the expensive Wilton carpet (here protected by a green baize “crumb cloth”), paintings, a large looking glass, and a dining table big enough to accommodate many guests comfortably—conform to those recommended by Thomas Sheraton, an English designer and champion of good taste. The cellaret [1975.755] in the foreground, used to cool bottles of wine, was also a new form; it remained in Sargent’s family and was given to the Museum by one of the artist’s descendants.

    Although the painting records a private event, it was created for exhibition. In the 1820s, visitors willing to pay 25¢ could see it in a gallery operated by the drawing master David Brown at 2 Cornhill Square, Boston. Business was brisk; presumably the picture was enjoyed not only by Sargent’s social circle but also by those who could not afford such luxurious surroundings yet enjoyed a peek into such an elite and opulent world. Because this was a commercial success, Brown commissioned Sargent to paint The Tea Party[19.12]. Beginning in 1824, Brown toured the paintings together.

    Notes
    1. Sketch of the Wednesday Evening Club by Samuel Kirkland Lothrop (Boston: John Wilson and Son, 1873), n.p., quoted in Jane C. Nylander, “Henry Sargent’s Dinner Party and Tea Party,” Magazine Antiques, May 1982, 1172.

    This text was adapted from Elliot Bostwick Davis et al., American Painting [http://www.mfashop.com/9020398034.html], MFA Highlights (Boston: MFA Publications, 2003).

    Provenance

    About 1821, sold to David L. Brown, Boston; before 1842, sold back to the artist (1770-1845); by descent to the artist's grandson, Winthrop Henry Sargent (1840-1916), Boston; by descent to his wife, Aimee Rotch Sargent (1852-1918), Boston; by descent to her sister, Annie Lawrence Rotch (Mrs. Horatio A.) Lamb (born 1857), Milton, Mass.; 1919, gift of Mrs. Horatio A. Lamb to the MFA. (Accession Date: February 6, 1919)

    Credit Line

    Gift of Mrs. Horatio Appleton Lamb in memory of Mr. and Mrs. Winthrop Sargent

    Details

    Dimensions

    156.53 x 126.36 cm (61 5/8 x 49 3/4 in.)

    Accession Number

    19.13

    Medium or Technique

    Oil on canvas

    On View

    Prudence S. and William M. Crozier, Jr. Gallery (Gallery 121)

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  • A Foreigner's Wine Party (Gaikokujin shuen no zu), from an untitled series of foreigners at home

    「外国人酒宴之図」

    Japanese
    Edo period
    1860 (Ansei 7/Man'en 1), 10th month
    Artist Utagawa Yoshikazu (Japanese, active 1848–1870), Publisher Maruya Jinpachi (Marujin, Enjudô) (Japanese)

    Description

    Signed

    Issen Yoshikazu ga

    Markings

    Censor's seal: Monkey 10 aratame No blockcutter's mark 改印:申十改 彫師:なし

    Provenance

    Purchased in London 1985–1990 from the Japanese Gallery, Kensington Church Street.

    Credit Line

    Jean S. and Frederic A. Sharf Collection

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Konishi, Nishiki-e Bakumatsu Meiji no rekishi 2 (1977), p. 58

    Dimensions

    Vertical ôban; 15 x 10 in. (38.1 x 25.4 cm)

    Accession Number

    2005.538

    Medium or Technique

    Woodblock print (nishiki-e); ink and color on paper

    Not On View

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  • Family Eating Soba Noodles

    Japanese
    Late Meiji era
    cancelled 1904
    Artist Unknown, Japanese

    Place of Creation: Japan

    Description

    Provenance

    Leonard A. Lauder Collection, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, Fractional gift of Lauder (Accession date: March 20, 2002).

    Credit Line

    Leonard A. Lauder Collection of Japanese Postcards

    Details

    Dimensions

    Overall: 8.8 x 13.8 cm (3 7/16 x 5 7/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    2002.6944

    Medium or Technique

    Photographic reproduction with handcoloring on card

    Not On View

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    Postcards

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  • Still Life with Goblet and Fruit

    1656
    Jan Jansz. van de Velde (Dutch, 1619 or 1620–1662)

    Description

    A member of a prominent family of artists, Jan van de Velde distinguished himself among still-life painters of the mid-seventeenth century for his simple, yet elegant compositions featuring a few carefully chosen objects—here, a lemon, roemer (goblet) and imported wan-li porcelain bowl. The origins of such masterfully balanced still lifes can be found in Van de Velde’s native Haarlem. In this city, Pieter Claesz and Willem Heda pioneered the tradition of depicting simple Dutch meals monochromatically. Van de Velde remained faithful to the studied, objective quality of his predecessors’ work, closely observing the unique manner in which light responded to diverse surfaces, such as glass, porcelain, or fruit. By mid-century, the artist had moved to Amsterdam, which, stimulated by Willem Kalf’s arrival in 1650, had become a center for still-life painting. Whereas Kalf’s colorful compositions celebrated the opulence of exquisite objects, Van de Velde’s canvases were more austere. Kalf’s dramatic use of light and warmer tonalities ultimately influenced Van de Velde’s later work.

    Inscription

    Lower right: Jan Vande Velde ANO / 1656 / fecit

    Provenance

    Henry Jacob Bigelow (b. 1818 - d. 1890), Boston, MA; by descent to William Sturgis Bigelow (b. 1850 - d. 1926), Boston; by 1927, from William Bigelow to an anonymous donor; 1927, gift by exchange from an anonymous donor to the MFA. (Accession Date: September 8, 1927)

    Credit Line

    Anonymous gift, by exchange

    Details

    Dimensions

    37.5 x 34.9 cm (14 3/4 x 13 3/4 in.)

    Accession Number

    27.465

    Medium or Technique

    Oil on canvas

    Not On View

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  • Peasants Carousing

    1662
    Jan Miense Molenaer (Dutch, 1609 or 1610–1668)

    Description

    Many scenes featuring peasants are set in inns. In the tradition of Adriaen Brouwer-whose interior settings and unsentimental representations of the coarse life of the lower classes were important innovations-Molenaer depicts here a cavernous space with peasants making music, fighting, eating, drinking, dancing, and cavorting. A contemporary document indicates that the painting was based on a comic poem by Gerbrand Adriaensz. Bredero and that the commission was offered as an exchange for an interest payment on the painter’s house. Such images, painted for the well-to-do, were meant to denounce the riotous carryings-on of boors; the artist edified his audience by holding up to them a mirror of improper behavior.

    Inscription

    Lower left on bench: Jan . Molenaer 1662

    Provenance

    Until 1907, Edward Balfour, Esq. (b. 1849 - d. 1927), Balbirnie, Fife, Scotland; May 31, 1907, Balfour sale, Christie, Manson and Woods, London, lot 142, to Gooden and Fox, London; 1907, sold by Gooden and Fox to the MFA for $16,650 [see note 1]. (Accession Date: August 8, 1907) NOTES: [1] MFA accession numbers 07.499 - 07.502 were acquired together for $16,650.

    Credit Line

    Julia Bradford Huntington James Fund

    Details

    Dimensions

    112.7 x 130.2 cm (44 3/8 x 51 1/4 in.)

    Accession Number

    07.500

    Medium or Technique

    Oil on canvas

    Not On View

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    Europe

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  • The Drinking Party of the Shutendôji at Mount Ôe (Ôeyama Shutendôji shuen no zu)

    「大江山酒天童子酒宴之図」

    Japanese
    Edo period
    about 1831 (Tenpô 2)
    Artist Utagawa Kuniyoshi (Japanese, 1797–1861), Publisher Daikokuya Heikichi (Japanese)

    Description

    Triptych: 17.3209.54 (left), 17.3209.55 (center), 17.3209.56 (right)

    MFA impressions: 11.39563a-c, 17.3209.54-6

    Signed

    Ichiyûsai Kuniyoshi ga (on each sheet) 一勇斎国芳画

    Markings

    Censor's seal: kiwame 改印:極

    Credit Line

    Denman Waldo Ross Collection

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Shibuya Kuritsu Shôtô Bijutsukan, Musha-e (2003), #11; Suzuki 1992, #94; Robinson, Kuniyoshi: The Warrior-Prints (1982), #T21

    Dimensions

    Vertical ôban triptych; 36.7 x 77 cm (14 7/16 x 30 5/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    17.3209.54-6

    Medium or Technique

    Woodblock print (nishiki-e); ink and color on paper

    Not On View

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  • A Venetian Banquet

    about 1775-85
    Giovanni Domenico Tiepolo (Italian, 1727–1804)

    Description

    Inscription

    Signed lower left within margin: Dom Tiepolo f about 1791.

    Provenance

    Sotheby's, 11 November, 1965, lot 19; Colnaghi, London; acquired October 1966

    Credit Line

    Arthur Tracy Cabot Fund

    Details

    Catalogue Raisonné

    Macandrew 089

    Dimensions

    Sheet: 29.2 x 42.1 cm (11 1/2 x 16 9/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    66.834

    Medium or Technique

    Pen and brown ink with brush and gray-brown wash over black chalk on off-white laid paper

    Not On View

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  • Congratulatory Banquet at the New Imperial Palace (Shin kôkyo goshukuen no zu)

    「新皇居御祝宴之圖」

    Japanese
    Meiji era
    1887 (Meiji 20)
    Artist Yôshû Chikanobu (Hashimoto Chikanobu) (Japanese, 1838–1912), Publisher Yokoyama Ryôhachi (Japanese)

    Description

    Signed

    Yôshû Chikanobu hitsu 楊洲周延筆

    Provenance

    Various dealers: primarily in London and Tokyo. Purchased between 1985-1999.

    Credit Line

    Jean S. and Frederic A. Sharf Collection

    Details

    Dimensions

    Vertical ôban triptych; 37.1 x 74.3 cm (14 5/8 x 29 1/4 in.)

    Accession Number

    2000.143a-c

    Medium or Technique

    Woodblock print (nishiki-e); ink and color on paper

    Not On View

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  • Banquet Room, the Grand Hotel, Yokohama (from an unidentified series)

    Japanese
    Taisho era
    inscribed 1919
    Artist Unknown, Japanese

    Place of Creation: Japan

    Description

    Provenance

    ex. Jaeger Collection Leonard A. Lauder Collection, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, Fractional gift of Lauder (Accession date: March 20, 2002).

    Credit Line

    Leonard A. Lauder Collection of Japanese Postcards

    Details

    Dimensions

    Overall: 8.8 x 13.8 cm (3 7/16 x 5 7/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    2002.6721

    Medium or Technique

    Collotype with hand coloring; ink on card stock

    Not On View

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    Postcards

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  • People Gathered, Expecting Food (Tanin no kuiyori) from Ehagaki sekai

    Postcard of people around the big mountain of the sweets
    他人の食い拠り 絵葉書世界より

    Japanese
    Late Meiji era
    1909
    Artist Unknown, Japanese, Publisher Kokkei shinbun sha (Japanese)

    Place of Creation: Japan

    Description

    Provenance

    Ex. Jaeger Collection Leonard A. Lauder Collection, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, Fractional gift of Lauder (Accession date: March 20, 2002); ex. Jaeger Collection

    Credit Line

    Leonard A. Lauder Collection of Japanese Postcards

    Details

    Dimensions

    Overall (trimmed): 8.8 x 13.8 cm (3 7/16 x 5 7/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    2002.2228

    Medium or Technique

    Color lithograph; ink on card stock

    Not On View

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  • A Peasant Meal

    Bernardus Johannes Blommers (Dutch, 1845–1914)

    Description

    Signed

    Lower left: Blommers

    Provenance

    William C. Cotton; acquired March 1933

    Credit Line

    Bequest of Elizabeth A. Cotton

    Details

    Dimensions

    Sheet: 48.3 x 64.2 cm (19 x 25 1/4 in. )

    Accession Number

    33.319

    Medium or Technique

    Watercolor on paper

    Not On View

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    Europe, Prints and Drawings

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    Watercolors

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  • Women at Meal

    Japanese
    Late Meiji era - Taisho era
    Artist Unknown, Japanese

    Place of Creation: Japan

    Description

    Provenance

    Leonard A. Lauder Collection, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, Fractional gift of Lauder (Accession date: March 20, 2002).

    Credit Line

    Leonard A. Lauder Collection of Japanese Postcards

    Details

    Dimensions

    Overall: 8.8 x 13.8 cm (3 7/16 x 5 7/16 in.)

    Accession Number

    2002.17704

    Medium or Technique

    Collotype with hand coloring; ink on card stock

    Not On View

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  • Peasants Carousing in a Tavern

    Adriaen Brouwer (Dutch, about 1606–1638)

    Description

    Provenance

    1790 (?), bought in Paris by Henry Temple, 2nd Viscount Palmerston (b. 1739 - d. 1802), Broadlands, near Romsey, Hampshire, England [see note 1]; remained at Broadlands and passed by descent to Wilfred William Ashley, Baron Mount Temple (b. 1867 - d. 1939), Broadlands; to his daughter, Edwina Cynthia Annette Mounbatten (b. 1901 - d. 1960), Broadlands. 1949, sold by Joseph (probably Captain Vivian Joseph) to W.E. Duits, Ltd. on behalf of 17th Century Masters, Ltd., London; 1956, sold by Duits to the MFA for £5,000. (Accession Date: December 13, 1956) NOTES: [1] That the painting may have been bought in 1790 in Paris is according to Gerard Knuttel, Adriaen Brouwer: The Master and His Work (The Hague, 1962), p. 58. Palmerston is also known to have purchased a number of paintings during a visit to Paris in 1791. In his study Portrait of a Golden Age: Intimate Papers of the Second Viscount Palmerston, Courtier under George III (Boston, 1958), Brian Connell notes that Palmerston was buying and selling Dutch pictures--including works by Brouwer--even earlier, in the decade after his first Grand Tour (1763-1764).

    Credit Line

    Ernest Wadsworth Longfellow Fund

    Details

    Dimensions

    33.3 x 49.2 cm (13 1/8 x 19 3/8 in.)

    Accession Number

    56.1185

    Medium or Technique

    Oil on panel

    Not On View

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  • Basket with nuts

    Chinese
    Qing dynasty
    second half of the 17th century

    Description

    Credit Line

    Charles Bain Hoyt Fund

    Details

    Dimensions

    Basket: Height: 2.2 cm; width: 8.3 cm & 7.3 cm

    Accession Number

    59.230.1

    Medium or Technique

    Glazed earthenware: Yixing ware

    Not On View

    Collections

    Asia

    Classifications

    Ceramics, Pottery, Earthenware

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