William Harnett / Memento Mori, "To This favour" / 1879William Harnett
Memento Mori, "To This favour"

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Creator Name: Harnett, William Michael
Creator Nationality: North American; American
Creator Role: Artist
Creator Dates/Places: 1848 - 1892
Gender: M
Creator Name-CRT: William Harnett
Title: Memento Mori, "To This favour"
Title Type: Primary
View: Full View
Creation Start Date: 1879
Creation End Date: 1879
Creation Date: 1879
Object Type: Paintings
Materials and Techniques: oil on canvas
Dimensions: Framed: 97.5cm x 77cm x 7.5cm, Unframed: 61.3cm x 81.5cm
Inscriptions: signed lower right: WMHARNETT / 1879 [WMH in monogram].
AMICA Contributor: The Cleveland Museum of Art
Owner Location: Cleveland, Ohio, USA
ID Number: 1965.235
Credit Line: Mr. and Mrs. William H. Marlatt Fund
Rights: http://www.clemusart.com/museum/disclaim2.html
Provenance: (Kennedy Galleries, New York).
Context: A candle and a skull, traditional symbols of death and the passage of time, are here given specific literary associations by the artist, who has written a passage from Shakespeare's Hamlet inside the cover of the book. The quote comes from the famous graveyard scene in which Hamlet discovers the skull of the court jester, "poor Yorick." He asks the skull to summon Ophelia, his betrothed, not realizing that she is already dead: "Now get you to my lady's chamber; and tell her, let her paint an inch thick, to this favour she must come." Here "paint" wittily suggests Ophelia's makeup as well as the artifice of Harnett's picture.
AMICA ID: CMA_.1965.235
AMICA Library Year: 2001
Media Metadata Rights: Copyright, The Cleveland Museum of Art

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