Posted in Appropriation & Inspiration, Contemporary Art, Meet the Collection, New/Now, tagged fool the eye, Fruit and Wine Glass, John Frederick Peto, John Haberle, Lincoln and the Pfleger Stretcher, Severin Roesen, Still Life with Violin, Time and Eternity, Trompe L'oeil, William Michael Harnett on October 20, 2010|
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Fruit and Wine Glass, ca. 1860-65. Severin Roesen (b. Germany, 1815/16-after 1872). Oil on canvas, 29 7/8 x 25 1/8 in. New Britain Museum of American Art, Charles F. Smith Fund, 1964.53.
In the hierarchy of academic pursuits, still-life painting was considered the least demanding art form. Nevertheless, fruit and flower paintings, which were decorative and opulent, were widely popular in the 19th and 20th centuries. Some painters duplicated nature so convincingly that they fooled viewers into thinking that the objects they painted were real. Severin Roesen (1815–1872), William Michael Harnett (1848–1892), John Frederick Peto (1854–1907), and John Haberle (1856–1933) were masters of this trompe l’oeil (French for “fool the eye”) tradition. Their highly developed realism was based on a thorough grounding in 19th century academic theories that stressed the faithful observation of nature.
When looking at Roesen’s bountiful still life, you immediately admire the great diversity of fruits: raspberries, strawberries, plums, cherries, peaches, apples, a single pear, half a lemon, and three varieties of grapes. Fruit tumbles over the shelves, enticing us to reach for it. (more…)
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The exhibition includes approximately 20 paintings and drawings on loan from museums from across the country as well as the NBMAA’s own Haberle paintings. In addition to the works of art, the NBMAA has borrowed a myraid of Haberle’s personal effects and letters (many reproduced in the paintings themselves) from the Haberle Family. John Haberle: American Master of Illusion will travel to the Brandywine River Museum, in Chadds Ford, Pennsylvania, from April 17, 2010 through July 11, 2010 and the Portland Museum of Art in Portland, Maine from Sept. 18, 2010 through Dec. 12, 2010.
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