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Raphaelle Peale (1774–1825). Still Life with Cake, 1818. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. Maria DeWitt Jesup Fund, 1959 (59.166) | Peale's tightly grouped still lifes are often permeated with a delicate melancholy akin to that which characterized the life of the artist; he was an alcoholic who suffered the effects of arsenic and mercury poisoning caused by his work as a taxidermist in his father's museu
Still Life with Silver Ewer, Willem Kalf, 1655 - 1660 Set in a dark niche are several valuable objects, including an elegantly embossed silver ewer, a glass in a gilt holder, and a Chinese porcelain bowl containing citrus fruit. The light shimmers on the silver and gold objects with all the colours of the rainbow, picking out the grotesque figures on the surface of the metal. Kalf’s mastery of illumination lends the objects a truly precious appearance.