Exposición de floreros y bodegones en la pintura española. Exh. cat., Palacio de la Biblioteca Nacional. [Madrid], , p. 68, no. 84, as from the collection of the Marqués de Remisa, lent by Sra. Vda. de Moret.
Enrique Lafuente Ferrari. "La peinture de bodegones en Espagne." Gazette des beaux-arts, 6th ser., 13 (1935), pp. 181–82, ill., as in the collection of Mme. de Moret y Remira.
Julio Cavestany in Floreros y bodegones en la pintura española. Exh. cat., Palacio de la Biblioteca Nacional. Madrid, 1936 and 1940, pp. 53, 161, no. 84, colorpl. 44, as "La merienda," lent by Sr. D. Salvador Moret.
Juan de Contreras, Marqués de Lozoya. Historia del arte hispánico. 4, 1st ed. Barcelona, 1945, p. 518, colorpl. 46, as in a private collection, Madrid.
David Giles Carter in El Greco to Goya. Exh. cat., John Herron Art Institute. Indianapolis, 1963, unpaginated, no. 50, pl. 50, notes that Meléndez used the same studio props in "Pears and Melon" (Museum of Fine Arts, Boston).
David Giles Carter. "El Greco to Goya: An Exhibition at Indianapolis and Providence." Connoisseur 153 (May 1963), pp. 55–56, ill., notes that it "recalls the series of pictures of food executed in 1772 for the Palace at Aranjuez" (Prado, Madrid).
Eleanor Tufts. "A Stylistic Study of the Paintings of Luis Meléndez." PhD diss., New York University, 1970, vol. 1, pp. 27, 30–31, 38 n. 68, 184–85, no. 62; vol. 2, fig. 56, compares this picutre, with its diagonal patch of landscape, with a group of four still life paintings by Meléndez in the Prado, thought to have been pendants; suggests that our canvas may have been the right member of such a pair, and thus the canvas originally designed to hang at its left had a similar landscape on its right side; notes that our picture is unusual for Meléndez, in that it does not conform to one of the three basic canvas sizes used by him.
Juan J. Luna in Luis Meléndez, bodegonista español del siglo XVIII. Exh. cat., Museo Nacional del Prado. [Madrid], , pp. 40, 102, ill.
Eleanor Tufts. "Luis Meléndez, Still-Life Painter "sans pareil"." Gazette des beaux-arts, 6th ser., 100 (November 1982), p. 163, no. 81, ill.
Katharine Baetjer in The Metropolitan Museum of Art: Notable Acquisitions, 1983–1984. New York, 1984, p. 60, ill. (color).
Katharine Baetjer in The Jack and Belle Linsky Collection in The Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York, 1984, pp. 109–11, no. 40, ill. (color).
Eleanor Tufts. Luis Meléndez: Eighteenth-Century Master of the Spanish Still Life: With a Catalogue Raisonné. Columbia, Mo., 1985, pp. 102–3, no. 80, pl. 80, suggests a date of about 1771, as this date appears on two still lifes by Meléndez (Prado, Madrid) which also have landscape backgrounds.
Alfonso E. Pérez Sánchez. Nature morte espagnole du XVIIe siècle à Goya. Fribourg, Switzerland, 1987, p. 192, fig. 195 (color).
Juan J. Luna. Los alimentos de España en la pintura: Bodegones de Luis Meléndez. [Madrid], 1995, pp. 11–12, 52, 142, ill.
Alfonso E. Pérez Sánchez. Pintura española recuperada por el coleccionismo privado. Exh. cat., Hospital de los Venerables. Seville, 1996, p. 164.
Janis Tomlinson in Painting in Spain in the Age of Enlightenment: Goya and His Contemporaries. Exh. cat., Indianapolis Museum of Art. [Indianapolis], 1997, pp. 268–69, observes that only six of Meléndez's paintings are large-scale compositions featuring outdoor settings, including this picture, four in the Prado, and one in a private collection; believes the Prado and private collection paintings were made for the Prince of Asturias to decorate the Nuevo Cabinete de Historia Natural and thus to glorify the products of Spanish agriculture; in comparison, believes the MMA work was made for a private patron as it does not emphasize produce identified with the Spanish kingdoms.
Sybille Ebert-Schifferer. Still Life: A History. New York, 1998, p. 222, fig. 160.
Gudrun Maurer. Spanish Paintings. Stockholm, 2001, pp. 97, 100 n. 3, discusses it in relation to the "Basket of Wild Strawberries in a Landscape" attributed to Luis Meléndez, Nationalmuseum, Stockholm.
Peter Cherry in Peter Cherry and Juan J. Luna with the collaboration of Natacha Seseña. Luis Meléndez: Bodegones. Exh. cat., Museo Nacional del Prado. 2004, p. 216, ill., mentions it in relation to another unusually large still life by the artist in the Várez Fisa collection, Madrid.
Peter Cherry. Luis Meléndez, Still-Life Painter. [Madrid], , pp. 99, 115, 117–18, 120–21, 132, 136, 184–86, 343 n. 165, p. 540, no. 80, ill. p. 460 (color), calls this picture a self-conscious response to the commonly employed landscape/garden setting of Italian still-life paintings of the 17th and early 18th century, works he would have seen during his residence in Rome and Naples between 1749 and 1753; discusses Meléndez's four still lifes in a landscape commissioned by the prince of Asturias in 1771 and notes that it is difficult to say whether his other still lifes in landscape settings, including the present work, precede or follow that group; remarks that the "scale and artistic ambition" of this painting "might imply that this is a late work, although this too remains an hypothesis"; states that the "arrangement of fruits in the left-hand corner of the picture was radically revised; the three pears are all that remain from a composition which originally comprised a branch of peaches, loose peaches and plums" [see Notes]; discusses at length the esthetic decisions Meléndez made in the process of repainting.
Peter Cherry in Luis Meléndez: Master of the Spanish Still Life. Exh. cat., National Gallery of Art. Washington, 2009, p. 13, ill. (color), dates it 1775–80 in the caption.