Pierre Bonnard (French, 18671947)
Oil on canvas; 19 7/8 x 26 3/8 in. (50.5 x 67 cm)
Partial and Promised Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Douglas Dillon, 1998 (1998.412.1)
© 2011 Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / ADAGP, Paris
This painting continues a succession of scenes of dining room interiors that Bonnard created with infinite variations throughout his career. The motif first appeared in the early 1890s. In these scenes, figures often flank the far sides of the gently curved dining tableschildren, parents, nannies, or grannieswith the children's heads usually level with the still-life objects, sometimes creating humorous effects.
This work is different. The rectangular table is tilted so far upward as to appear nearly parallel with the picture plane. Because figures are absent, the objectsa fruit bowl with apples, pears, and grapes; bottles; assorted knifes with ebony handles; glasses; and small dishesdominate the show on the strawberry-red checkered ground.