A Bachelor's Drawer

John Haberle American

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.

A Bachelor's Drawer, John Haberle (1856–1933), Oil on canvas, American

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