About this artwork
Still-life painter William Michael Harnett excelled at trompe l’oeil, painting that fools the eye, through realistic depiction. In For Sunday’s Dinner, a chicken hangs in front of a painted door with its throat cut and most of its feathers plucked; a few remaining downy spots stand out against the puckered, pimpled flesh. The metal door hinges, on the right side of the canvas, frame the chicken and echo its form. The painting’s title and the rough, blemished surface of the door suggest a country dinner, the homey meal evoking nostalgia for a simpler past.
- William Michael Harnett
- For Sunday's Dinner
- United States
- Oil on canvas
- Signed, lower left: "Harnett/1888"
- 94.3 × 53.6 cm (37 1/8 × 21 1/8 in.)
- Wilson L. Mead Fund