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The Oak Door

Artist:
Alexander Pope (1849–1924)
Date:
1887
Medium:
Oil on oak
Dimensions:
50 x 41 in. (127 x 104.1 cm)
Classification:
Paintings
Credit Line:
Arthur Hoppock Hearn Fund, 1965
Accession Number:
65.168
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 774
The carvings and illustrations with which Pope began his artistic career usually portrayed living birds and animals. William Michael Harnett’s accomplishments apparently inspired him to attempt trompe-l’oeil (“deceive the eye”) still lifes in the 1880s. This work, a trophy of the hunt, depicts with extraordinary accuracy a Remington Arms rifle, a crocheted game bag, and a dead ring-necked pheasant. Rather than simulating the grain of an oak door, Pope painted on an oak panel, added a matching oak frame, and delineated Renaissance Revival hinges, an escutcheon of Chippendale design, and a lion’s-head pull.
Signature: [at lower left]: ALEX-POPE; [on reverse]: Painted by / ALEX. POPE--1887
Eugene Tompkins, Boston; Private Collection, Palm Beach, Florida; with Tillou Gallery, Litchfield, Connecticut, until 1964; with Graham Galleries, New York, 1964–1965
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