Art/ Collection/ Art Object

A Bachelor's Drawer

John Haberle (1856–1933)
Oil on canvas
20 x 36 in. (50.8 x 91.4 cm)
Credit Line:
Purchase, Henry R. Luce Gift, 1970
Accession Number:
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 763
Typical of Haberle’s work in its subject, composition, and humor, this is also the last of his successful trompe-l’oeil (French for “fool the eye”) still lifes. Arranged against a simulated drawer front and rendered with incredible precision are the souvenirs of a bachelor’s freedom, including theater stubs, playing cards, and “girlie” photographs. Other items—including a pamphlet entitled “How To Name the Baby” and a cartoon of a dyspeptic infant—signal the end of bachelorhood. Haberle’s self-portrait, in a simulated tintype at the bottom edge of the canvas, suggests that the work may have been autobiographical.
Signature: [at upper left]: . HABERLE . 1890 - 94
the artist, until 1933; his daughter, Mrs. Vera Haberle Demmer, New Haven, Connecticut and his granddaughter, Mrs. Gloria Shiner, East Haven, Connecticut, until 1966; with Robert P. Weimann Jr., Ansonia, Connecticut, as agent, 1966; J. William Middendorf II, New York, 1966–1970
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