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MFA for Educators

Engage your students with the collections of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, to illustrate themes and concepts in any discipline.

Homeschool (9-11) PM: Awesome Assemblage!

  • Sheeler

    Slide Notes

    Details

    Ore Into Iron

    1953

    Charles Sheeler, American, 1883–1965

    Dimensions

    61.28 x 46.04 cm (24 1/8 x 18 1/8 in.)

    Medium

    Oil on canvas

    Classification

    Paintings

    Accession Number

    1990.381

    Collections
    Americas More Info

    Description

    Multimedia

  • John Federick Peto

    Slide Notes

    "John Frederick Peto’s painting of a shabby but colorful storefront window belongs to the school of trompe l’oeil (fool the eye) paintings associated with William Michael Harnett [39.761]. It is an early masterpiece in a career that stretched from 1877, when Peto enrolled for a year at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, until his death thirty years later. While living in Philadelphia, Peto became friendly with Harnett and borrowed many of his subjects and compositional devices, although he worked in his own distinct, more painterly style. The canvas of The Poor Man’s Store depicts brightly colored candies, peanuts, gingerbread, and fruit for sale. It is surrounded by a wooden frame illusionistically painted to simulate a door, shelf, and wall.

    Such shop windows were characteristic of Philadelphia during the nineteenth century. A contemporary reviewer described one of Peto’s earlier paintings of the same subject in the Philadelphia Record in 1880:
    [Block quote]
    [It] cleverly illustrates a familiar phase of our street life, and presents upon canvas one of the most prominent of Philadelphia’s distinctive features. A rough, ill-constructed board shelf holds the “Poor Man’s Store”—a half dozen rosy-cheeked apples, some antique gingerbread, a few jars of cheap confectionery “Gibraltars” and the like, and, to give all a proper finish and lend naturalness to the decorative surroundings of the goods, a copy of The Record has been spread beneath.”[1]
    [/Block quote]

    It was not unusual for Peto to paint several versions of a theme, and the Museum’s picture seems to be similar to the painting described in the Record except for the presence of the newspaper in the earlier work. Instead, it has been replaced by signs advertising “Lodging” and “Good board $3.00 a week.” The metal numbered plaque hanging above the window, the piece of string, and the torn remains of notices were some of Peto’s favorite devices, each one painted to add to the illusionistic effect.

    Peto’s penchant for portraying humble, derelict objects in disordered arrangements may account for his lack of wealthy patrons during his lifetime. After working in Philadelphia, he moved to Island Heights, New Jersey, in 1891, where he was largely forgotten by the Philadelphia art world. In the early twentieth century an unscrupulous art dealer forged Harnett’s name on many of Peto’s works in order to sell them more readily. It was not until mid-century that the paintings were reattributed and Peto began to be appreciated as one of the preeminent still-life painters of the late nineteenth century." - mfa.org

    Details

    The Poor Man's Store

    1885

    John Frederick Peto, American, 1854–1907

    Dimensions

    90.17 x 65.09 cm (35 1/2 x 25 5/8 in.)

    Medium

    Oil on canvas and panel

    Classification

    Paintings

    Accession Number

    62.278

    Collections
    Americas
    On View
    Forkner & Gill Family Gallery (Am. Daily) - 238 More Info

    Old Time Letter Rack

    1894

    John Frederick Peto, American, 1854–1907

    Dimensions

    76.52 x 63.5 cm (30 1/8 x 25 in.)

    Medium

    Oil on canvas

    Classification

    Paintings

    Accession Number

    64.411

    Collections
    Americas
    On View
    Forkner & Gill Family Gallery (Am. Daily) - 238 More Info

    Description


    Multimedia