Oil on canvas
32 x 25 5/8 in.
signed and dated, l.r.: DOVE \ 08
Amon Carter Museum of American Art, Fort Worth, Texas, Acquisition in memory of Anne Burnett Tandy, Trustee, Amon Carter Museum of American Art, 1968-1980
In 1907, Dove gave up his job as a commercial illustrator to study modern art in France. There, he was inspired by the still-life paintings of Paul Cézanne and Henri Matisse. Cézanne experimented with spatial dimensions by layering objects on uneven tabletops, while Matisse used pure color and decorative designs to explore rhythmic energy.
Like those French masters, Dove stacked ripe fruits and a lobster on a cloth-covered table set against busy wallpaper. The backdrop, placement of the objects, and palette of bright pinks, oranges, and violets combine to infuse this static subject with a visual liveliness. While critics disparaged the painting, Dove was undeterred and went on to become one of America’s first abstract artists.