The Basket Of Apples

Robert Street

American, 1796 - 1865

The Basket of Apples, 1818

  • Not On View

Oil on board

Dimensions: 10 × 14 in. (25.4 × 35.6 cm)
Framed: 15 1/2 × 19 1/2 in. (39.4 × 49.5 cm)

Gift of the Viola E. Bray Charitable Trust Fund Via Mr. and Mrs. William L. Richards, 1964.4

A native of Germantown, Pennsylvania, the versatile Robert Street painted still lifes, history and religious paintings, and landscapes in addition to the portraits for which he is best known. The Basket of Apples, Street's only located still life, is a meticulously painted and highly detailed image that employs the illusionistic, trompe-l'oeil style, popular during the period. Here Street depicts a grouping of apples, carefully arranged within an elegant, silver wire-worked basket. The composition is extraordinarily balanced and nearly symmetrical—a nod to the neoclassical style that was still influential in Philadelphia. Street is also committed to focusing on the familiar to achieve an unquestionable realism. He has chosen to paint local rather than exotic fruit and reveals each flaw. He deliberately contrasts the brown spots of the blemished apples with the cool perfection of the silver basket.

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