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Old Models

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To late-nineteenth-century viewers in an age of industrialization and progress, William Michael Harnett’s Old Models was a nostalgic tribute to the unhurried cultural pursuits of a bygone era. Harnett, the talented leader of the group of late-nineteenth-century illusionistic still-life...

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Lower left: WMHarnett./1892. [WMH in monogram]


1892, estate of the artist; February 23-24, 1893, Harnett Estate Sale, Thomas Birch's Sons, Philadelphia, lot 27. 1893, with M. Knoedler Gallery, New York. February 1-2, 1898, A. Ludwig Collection Sale, Fifth Avenue Art Galleries, New York, lot 93. 1926, with George E. Kelley, Gimbel Brothers, Philadelphia; 1926, sold by George E. Kelley to William J. Hughes (1863-1938), Washington, D.C.; 1939, sold by the estate of William J. Hughes to Downtown Galleries, New York; 1939, sold by Downtown Galleries to the MFA for $4,000. (Accession Date: November 9, 1939)

Credit Line

The Hayden Collection—Charles Henry Hayden Fund



138.11 x 71.75 cm (54 3/8 x 28 1/4 in.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique

Oil on canvas