Cézanne once proclaimed, "With an apple I want to astonish Paris," and he succeeded, even in his most deceptively simple still lifes, to dazzle and delight. Turning to the Provençal apples and Beurré Diel pears grown in the vicinity of the family’s estate near Aix, he dispensed with traditional one-point perspective and examined the fruit, plates, and table from various viewpoints—straight on, above, and sideways.
[Ambroise Vollard, Paris, ca. 1899–1900, stock book A, no. 3361; bought from the artist for Fr 150; sold on April 14, 1900, for Fr 2,000 to Emil Heilbuth, Berlin, for Cassirer]; [Bruno and Paul Cassirer, Berlin, 1900–1901]; Paul Cassirer, Berlin (1901–2); his ex-wife, Lucie Ceconi, Berlin (1902–12; sold on March 22, 1912 to Bernheim-Jeune); Josse and Gaston Bernheim-Jeune, Paris (1912–at least 1926; cat., 1919, vol. 1, pl. 29, as "Les Grosses Pommes"); [Galerie E. Bignou, Paris]; [Reid & Lefevre, London, until 1929; sold half share to Knoedler on January 1, 1929]; [Reid & Lefevre, Glasgow and London, and Knoedler, New York, 1929; Knoedler stock no. A602; sold for $50,000 on December 26 to Clark]; Stephen C. Clark, New York (1929–d. 1960)
Berlin. Bruno and Paul Cassirer. "Paul Cézanne, Louis [sic] Corinth, Walter Leistikow, Fritz Klimsch, D. Y. Cameron," November 2–December 1, 1900, no. 12 (as "Äpfel auf einem Tisch") [see Feilchenfeldt 1993, Rewald 1996, and Echte and Feilchenfeldt 2011, vol. 1].
Paris. Bernheim-Jeune. "Exposition Cézanne," December 1–18, 1920, no. 17 (as "Nature morte," lent by MM. Bernheim-Jeune).
Paris. Bernheim-Jeune. "Exposition d'oeuvres des XIXe et XXe siècles," June–July 1925, no. 14 (as "Pommes et poires").
Paris. Grand Palais des Champs-Élysées. "Trente ans d'art indépendant: 1884–1914," February 20–March 21, 1926, no. 2875 (as "Nature morte," lent by a private collection).
Paris. Bernheim-Jeune. "Rétrospective Paul Cézanne (1839–1906)," June 1–30, 1926, no. 47 (as "Nature morte," probably this work).
Lucerne. location unknown. "Peintures des écoles impressionniste et néo-impressionniste," February 1929, no. 1 [see Rewald 1996].
Glasgow. Alex. Reid & Lefevre, Ltd. "Ten Masterpieces by Nineteenth Century French Painters," April 1929, no. 1 (as "Les Grosses pommes").
London. Alex. Reid & Lefevre, Ltd. "Ten Masterpieces by Nineteenth Century French Painters," June–July 1929, no. 1 (as "Les Grosses pommes").
New York. Museum of Modern Art. "Summer Exhibition: Retrospective," June 15–September 28, 1930, no. 22 (as "Still Life—Apples," lent by Stephen C. Clark, New York).
New York. Marie Harriman Gallery. "Chardin and the Modern Still Life," November 1936, no. 13 (as "Apples," lent by Stephen C. Clark, New York).
New York. Museum of Modern Art. "Summer Exhibitions: Painting & Sculpture from the Museum Collection and on Loan," June 23–November 4, 1937, no catalogue.
New York. Marie Harriman Gallery. "Cézanne: Centennial Exhibition, 1839–1939," November 7–December 2, 1939, no. 11 (as "Grosses pommes," lent anonymously).
New York. Coordinating Council of French Relief Societies. "Jardin d'été," May 3–31, 1944, unnum. checklist (as "Les Grosses pommes," lent by Stephen C. Clark).
New York. Century Association. "Paintings from the Stephen C. Clark Collection," June 6–September 28, 1946, unnum. checklist (as "Grosses pommes").
New York. M. Knoedler & Co. "A Collectors Taste: Selections from the Collection of Mr. and Mrs. Stephen C. Clark," January 12–30, 1954, no. 9 (as "Les Grosses pommes").
New Haven. Yale University Art Gallery. "Pictures Collected by Yale Alumni," May 8–June 18, 1956, no. 109 (as "Les Grosses Pommes [Still Life—Apples]," lent by Stephen C. Clark).
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Paintings from Private Collections: Summer Loan Exhibition," July 1–September 1, 1958, no. 15 (as "Still Life—Apples," lent by Stephen C. Clark).
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Paintings from Private Collections: Summer Loan Exhibition," July 7–September 7, 1959, no. 12 (as "Still Life—Apples," lent by Stephen C. Clark).
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Paintings from Private Collections: Summer Loan Exhibition," July 6–September 4, 1960, no. 12 (as "Still Life—Apples," lent by Stephen C. Clark).
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "French Paintings from the Bequest of Stephen Clark," October 17, 1961–January 7, 1962, no catalogue [not mentioned in press release but probably included in exhibition].
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "The Impressionist Epoch," December 12, 1974–February 10, 1975, not in catalogue.
Amsterdam. Rijksmuseum Vincent van Gogh. "Franse meesters uit het Metropolitan Museum of Art: Realisten en Impressionisten," March 15–May 31, 1987, no. 24.
Williamstown. Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute. "The Clark Brothers Collect: Impressionist and Early Modern Paintings," June 4–September 4, 2006, no. 51.
Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. "The Masterpieces of French Painting from The Metropolitan Museum of Art: 1800–1920," February 4–May 6, 2007, no. 74.
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Impressionist and Early Modern Paintings: The Clark Brothers Collect," May 22–August 19, 2007, no. 51.
Kunsthaus Zürich. "Von Matisse zum Blauen Reiter: Expressionismus in Deutschland und Frankreich," February 7–May 11, 2014, no. 2.
Los Angeles County Museum of Art. "Expressionism in Germany and France: From Van Gogh to Kandinsky," June 8–September 14, 2014, no. 13.
Montreal Museum of Fine Arts. "Van Gogh to Kandinsky: Impressionism to Expressionism, 1900–1914," October 11, 2014–January 25, 2015, no. 13.
Brisbane. Queensland Art Gallery | Gallery of Modern Art. "European Masterpieces from The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York," June 12–October 17, 2021, unnumbered cat.
Osaka. Osaka City Museum of Fine Arts. "European Masterpieces from The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York," November 13, 2021–January 16, 2022.
Tokyo. National Art Center. "European Masterpieces from The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York," February 9–May 30, 2022.
L'art moderne et quelques aspects de l'art d'autrefois; cent-soixante-treize planches d'après la collection privée de MM. J. & G. Bernheim-Jeune. Paris, 1919, vol. 1, pl. 29, as "Les Grosses pommes".
Bulletin de la vie artistique 7 (March 15, 1926), ill. (frontispiece).
Ten Masterpieces by XIXth Century French Painters. Exh. cat., Alex. Reid & Lefevre, Ltd. Glasgow, 1929, unpaginated, no. 1, ill., dates it about 1890.
"French Pictures: Exhibition in Glasgow." Glasgow Herald (April 22, 1929).
K. "French Masters: 10 Pictures Worth £250,000 on View in Glasgow." Glasgow Bulletin (April 16, 1929).
W. J. W. "Ten Masterpieces of French Art: Worth a Quarter of a Million." Glasgow Evening Times (April 16, 1929).
"Ten Great Pictures: City Exhibition is an Artistic Event." Glasgow Evening News (April 16, 1929).
Lionello Venturi. Cézanne: son art—son oeuvre. Paris, 1936, vol. 1, p. 173, no. 502; vol. 2, pl. 155, no. 502, calls it "Grosses pommes" and dates it 1885–87.
Robert J. Goldwater. "Cézanne in America: The Master's Paintings in American Collections." Art News Annual, section I (The 1938 Annual), 36 (March 26, 1938), p. 158, mentions it among "some small studies of the 'eighties'".
James W. Lane. "Thirty-three Masterpieces in a Modern Collection: Mr. Stephen C. Clark's Paintings by American and European Masters." Art News Annual 37 (February 25, 1939), p. 133, dates it 1885–87 and calls it representative of Cézanne's later period.
Erle Loran. Cézanne's Composition: Analysis of His Form with Diagrams and Photographs of His Motifs. [2nd ed., 1946]. Berkeley, 1943, p. 93.
Liliane Guerry. Cézanne et l'expression de l'espace. [1st ed.; 2nd ed., 1966]. Paris, 1950, p. 95.
"Ninety-first Annual Report of the Trustees for the Fiscal Year 1960–1961." Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin 20 (October 1961), p. 64, calls it "Still Life—Apples and Pears" and dates it about 1885–87.
Charles Sterling and Margaretta M. Salinger. French Paintings: A Catalogue of the Collection of The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Vol. 3, XIX–XX Centuries. New York, 1967, p. 109, ill., call it "Still Life—Apples and Pears (Les Grosses Pommes)"; date it 1885–87, following Venturi [Ref. 1936].
Sandra Orienti inL'opera completa di Cézanne. [French ed., 1975; English ed., 1985]. Milan, 1970, pp. 108–9, no. 482, ill.
Margit Rowell. "On Albers' Color." Artforum 10 (January 1972), p. 31, fig. 7.
Theodore Reff. "The Pictures Within Cézanne's Pictures." Arts Magazine 53 (June 1979), pp. 97, 104 n. 37, fig. 22, calls it "The Large Apples" and dates it 1885–87; states that the upper right corner of this work, depicting a stove at the Jas de Bouffan, appears in an unfinished state in the background of another painting, "Still Life with Basket" (1888–90; Musée d'Orsay, Paris; V594, R636); tentatively identifies the same stove in "Smokers" (Kunsthalle Mannheim; V684, R756); identifies the horizontal stripes in the background of our picture as a painted screen, shown here for the first time, and also included in the watercolor "Ginger Pot and Fruit" (collection Jean Dauberville, Paris; V1134) and the paintings "Portrait of Joachim Gasquet" (Národní Galerie, Prague; V694, R809) and "Still Life with Peppermint Bottle" (National Gallery of Art, Washington; V625, R772).
John Rewald. Paul Cézanne: The Watercolors, A Catalogue Raisonné. Boston, 1983, p. 154, under no. 289, notes that it must have been painted in the same room as the watercolor "Ginger Pot and Fruit) (V1134) because of the identical bluish horizontal stripe in the background; identifies this background as wainscoting, the same section of wall depicted in "The Blue Vase" (Musée d'Orsay, Paris; V512, R675) and "Vase of Flowers and Apples" (private collection, Switzerland; V513, R660) [see Ref. Reff 1979].
Charles S. Moffett. Impressionist and Post-Impressionist Paintings in The Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York, 1985, pp. 11, 200, 254, ill. (color), describes "traces of a previous pictorial idea visible at far right," which may indicate that this picture is unfinished.
Sjraar van Heutgen et al. inFranse meesters uit het Metropolitan Museum of Art: Realisten en Impressionisten. Exh. cat., Rijksmuseum Vincent van Gogh, Amsterdam. Zwolle, The Netherlands, 1987, pp. 15, 17, 74–75, no. 24, ill. (color, overall and detail).
Richard Kendall, ed. Cézanne by Himself: Drawings, Paintings, Writings. London, 1988, pp. 98, 313, ill. (color), dates it about 1885–87.
Christoph Jamme. "The Loss of Things: Cézanne—Rilke—Heidegger." Kunst & Museumjournaal 2, no. 1 (1990), ill. p. 41, dates it 1885–87.
Walter Feilchenfeldt in Götz Adriani. Cézanne: Gemälde. Exh. cat., Kunsthalle Tübingen. Cologne, 1993, pp. 299, 309 n. 22, identifies this painting as sold by Vollard on April 14, 1900 to Emil Heilbut on behalf of the Cassirer gallery and shown in Exh. Berlin 1900.
Philippe Dagen. Cézanne. Paris, 1995, p. 108, ill. (color).
Katharine Baetjer. European Paintings in The Metropolitan Museum of Art by Artists Born Before 1865: A Summary Catalogue. New York, 1995, p. 467, ill.
Michael Kimmelman. "At the Met with Roy Lichtenstein: Disciple of Color and Line, Master of Irony." New York Times (March 31, 1995), p. C27, ill.
Walter Feilchenfeldt inCézanne. Exh. cat., Galeries Nationales du Grand Palais, Paris. Philadelphia, 1996, p. 575 [French ed., Paris, 1995], states that Paul Cassirer probably purchased this picture from Vollard [see Ref. Feilchenfeldt 1993]; notes that Cassirer's first wife kept it after their divorce in 1902, then subsequently married Mr. Ceconi and sold her paintings to Bernheim-Jeune.
John Rewald, in collaboration with Walter Feilchenfeldt, and Jayne Warman. The Paintings of Paul Cézanne: A Catalogue Raisonné. New York, 1996, vol. 1, pp. 441, 562, 566–67, 569, 571, no. 701; vol. 2, p. 240, fig. 701, calls it "Grosses pommes" and dates it 1891–92; identifies the same background in "Madame Cézanne in a Green Hat" (Barnes Foundation, Merion, Penn.; V704, R700).
Michael Kimmelman. Portraits: Talking with Artists at the Met, the Modern, the Louvre and Elsewhere. New York, 1998, p. 94 [text similar to Kimmelman 1995].
Hendrik Ziegler inDie Moderne und ihre Sammler: Französische Kunst in Deutschem Privatbesitz vom Kaiserreich zur Weimarer Republik. Ed. Andrea Pophanken and Felix Billeter. Berlin, 2001, pp. 49, 62 n. 48, as "Grosses pommes"; states that it was sold to Heilbuth with Cézanne's "Maison sous des arbres (Provence)" (1885–87, National Gallery, London) and "Harlequin" (ca. 1888–90, private collection, South America) for a total of 6,000 francs.
Sarah Lees inThe Clark Brothers Collect: Impressionist and Early Modern Paintings. Exh. cat., Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute. Williamstown, Mass., 2006, pp. 245, 248, 251, 315, 321, no. 51, dates it 1885–87.
Gilbert T. Vincent and Sarah Lees inThe Clark Brothers Collect: Impressionist and Early Modern Paintings. Exh. cat., Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute. Williamstown, Mass., 2006, pp. 150, 156, 196 n. 74, fig. 123 (color), comment that after Clark decided not to buy the Cézanne "Still Life with Apples and a Pot of Primroses" (MMA 51.112.1), it was purchased by Adolph Lewisohn, who lent it to MoMA's first exhibition, which may have prompted Clark to purchase this work instead.
Rebecca A. Rabinow and Jayne S. Warman inCézanne to Picasso: Ambroise Vollard, Patron of the Avant-Garde. Ed. Rebecca A. Rabinow. Exh. cat., The Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York, 2006, p. 279.
Susan Alyson Stein inThe Masterpieces of French Painting from The Metropolitan Museum of Art: 1800–1920. Exh. cat., Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. New York, 2007, pp. 108, 191, no. 74, ill. (color and black and white).
Susan Alyson Stein inMasterpieces of European Painting, 1800–1920, in The Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York, 2007, pp. 123, 224–25, no. 112, ill. (color and black and white).
Kunstsalon Cassirer. Ed. Bernhard Echte and Walter Feilchenfeldt. Wädenswil, Zürich, 2011–16, vol. 1, p. 311, n. 8; pp. 341, 358, 360, 363, 484, ill. (color), as "Apfel auf einem Tisch".
Paul Smith. "Cézanne's ‘Primitive’ Perspective, or the ‘View from Everywhere’." The Art Bulletin 95 (March 2013), pp. 107, 110–12, 114–15, 119 n. 117, fig. 5 (color), discusses its representation of space in order to argue that Cezanne’s paintings sought to materialize a phenomenological conception of vision that prefigured Maurice Merleau-Ponty’s notion of a “lived perspective”.
Frauke Josenhans inExpressionism in Germany and France: From Van Gogh to Kandinsky. Exh. cat., Los Angeles County Museum of Art. Los Angeles, 2014, pp. 64, 276, no. 13, colorpl. 10, as "Still Life with Apples and Pears (Grosses pommes)".
Timothy O. Benson et al. Expressionismus in Deutschland und Frankreich: Von Matisse zum Blauen Reiter. Exh. cat., Kunsthaus Zürich. Los Angeles, 2014, p. 263, no. 2, colorpl. 2, as "Grosses pommes (Große Äpfel)".
Walter Feilchenfeldt, Jayne Warman, and David Nash. The Paintings, Watercolors and Drawings of Paul Cezanne: An Online Catalogue Raisonné. 2014–?, no. 841, ill. (color) [https://www.cezannecatalogue.com/catalogue/entry.php?id=679], as “Grosses pommes”; date it 1891–92.
Jayne Warman. "Les natures mortes au Jas de Bouffan." Cezanne Jas de Bouffan: Art et histoire. Ed. Denis Coutagne and François Chédeville. Lyons, 2019, p. 191 n. 14, p. 197, suggests it may have been one of the three paintings Joachim Gasquet described seeing during his portrait sitting in 1896 ("Cézanne," Paris, 1921, pp. 120–21) since it depicts the stove of the Jas de Bouffan studio.
Katharine Baetjer inEuropean Masterpieces from The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. Exh. cat., Queensland Art Gallery | Gallery of Modern Art. South Brisbane, 2021, pp. 222, 230, ill. pp. 2–3, 223 (color, overall and detail).
Chris Stolwijk and Julia Krikke inVan Gogh in America. Ed. Jill Shaw. Exh. cat., Detroit Institute of Arts. Detroit, 2022, pp. 54, 55 n. 58, fig. 8 (color).
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Paul Cézanne (French, Aix-en-Provence 1839–1906 Aix-en-Provence)
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