HEDA, Willem Claesz.
(b. 1594, Haarlem, d. 1680, Haarlem)

Breakfast Still-Life

Oil on wood, 44 x 56 cm
Musée du Louvre, Paris

This early still-life of Heda shows drinking vessels and a salt-cellar made of gold-plated metal with delicately engraved ornamental patterns that gently reflect the light. In fact, the overall monochrome character of the painting only admit a faint sheen. A tall, slim polygonal glass with horizontal grooves and a diamond structure towers above the table like a column. In front of it, almost like a counterpoint, there are two plates, one with left-overs from a berry pie that has only been half eaten. On the left, an empty glass is leaning on the plate. Between the glass and the plate a knife has been precariously placed so that it is threatening to fall off the table at any time. Finally, there are some walnuts and hazelnuts, suggesting that this, too, is a dessert still-life.