Art/ Collection/ Collection/ Art Object

Spring Flowers

Artist:
Copy after Gustave Courbet (French, second half 19th century)
Date:
ca. 1855–60
Medium:
Oil on canvas
Dimensions:
23 3/4 x 32 1/4 in. (60.3 x 81.9 cm)
Classification:
Paintings
Credit Line:
H. O. Havemeyer Collection, Bequest of Mrs. H. O. Havemeyer, 1929
Accession Number:
29.100.121
Not on view
Inscription: Falsely inscribed (lower left): G. Courbet / . . .
Mrs. H. O. (Louisine W.) Havemeyer, New York (1911–d. 1929; bought through Théodore Duret; cat., 1931, p. 101, ill., as by Courbet)
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Loan Exhibition of the Works of Gustave Courbet," April 7–May 18, 1919, no. 37 (lent anonymously).

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "The H. O. Havemeyer Collection," March 10–November 2, 1930, no. 37 (as by Courbet) [2nd ed., 1958, no. 90].

H. O. Havemeyer Collection: Catalogue of Paintings, Prints, Sculpture and Objects of Art. n.p., 1931, p. 101, ill., as "Still Life—Spring Flowers" by Courbet; read the inscription as "G. Courbet SP.", interpreting it to have been painted at the prison of Sainte Pélagie in 1871; call it a darker repetition of the Hamburg painting.

Carl Georg Heise. Letter to Theodore Rousseau. April 17, 1953, suggests that it may be a fake or copy after an 1855 painting in the Hamburger Kunsthalle (F182).

Charles Sterling. Letter to Theodore Rousseau. September 23, 1953, believes it could be a repetition by Courbet himself of the Hamburg picture; suggests that the signature may be followed by the date "68" rather than "S.P." for Sainte Pélagie [see Ref. Havemeyer 1931].

Louisine W. Havemeyer. Sixteen to Sixty: Memoirs of a Collector. New York, 1961, p. 195.

Gaston Delestre. Letter to Margaretta Salinger. March 10, 1962, calls it a copy of the painting in Hamburg.

Gaston Delestre. Letter to Margaretta Salinger. May 22, 1962, in response to the possibility that the inscription could read "C. P.", asserts that this picture cannot be attributed to Pata, who painted only portraits and landscapes.

Charles Sterling and Margaretta M. Salinger. French Paintings: A Catalogue of the Collection of The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Vol. 2, XIX Century. New York, 1966, p. 112, ill., state that "the high quality of the Museum's painting permits an attribution to Courbet himself".

Robert Fernier. La vie et l'oeuvre de Gustave Courbet. Vol. 1, Peintures, 1819–1865. Lausanne, 1977, p. 114, no. 185, ill. p. 115, calls it "Fleurs," by Courbet and notes that it is a replica of the Hamburg picture; dates it about 1855–60.

Hélène Toussaint in Gustave Courbet, 1819–1877. Exh. cat., Grand Palais, Paris. London, 1978, p. 219 [French ed., 1977, p. 138], states that the painting "has been regarded since 1953 as the work of a copyist or forger".

Frances Weitzenhoffer. The Havemeyers: Impressionism Comes to America. New York, 1986, p. 257, calls it "Flowers Piece: A Basket of Blossoms" and notes that it is considered a copy after Courbet.

Gretchen Wold. Memo to files. January 4, 1989, notes that on January 3, 1989, Gisela Helmkampf, Anne Norton, Susan Stein, Gary Tinterow and Gretchen Wold examined this painting at the Brooklyn Museum with other still lifes included in the "Courbet Reconsidered" exhibition; it was agreed that the work does not appear to have been painted by Courbet himself.

Louisine W. Havemeyer. Sixteen to Sixty: Memoirs of a Collector. Ed. Susan Alyson Stein. 3rd ed. [1st ed. 1930, repr. 1961]. New York, 1993, pp. 195, 330 n. 275.

Susan Alyson Stein in Splendid Legacy: The Havemeyer Collection. Exh. cat., The Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York, 1993, p. 258.

Gretchen Wold in Splendid Legacy: The Havemeyer Collection. Exh. cat., The Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York, 1993, p. 320, no. A164, ill. p. 319.

Richard R. Brettell and Stephen F. Eisenman. Nineteenth-Century Art in the Norton Simon Museum. Ed. Sara Campbell. Vol. 1, New Haven, 2006, p. 166.



This is a copy of a painting in the Hamburger Kunsthalle (1855; Fernier no. 182).
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