Artist’s Table

  • Isabel Bishop, Artist's Table, 1931, oil on canvas, Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of the Sara Roby Foundation, 1986.6.6

Bishop’s impeccable draftsmanship brought her recognition in the 1930s as one of the outstanding urban realists of the Fourteenth Street School, a group named for the area where Bishop, Reginald Marsh, Raphael Soyer, and several other artist friends portrayed the local scene. Artist’s Table offers an intimate glimpse of Bishop’s studio; the casual disarray of the painting table and partly opened drawer reveal the private space in which the artist worked.

Modern American Realism: The Sara Roby Foundation Collection, 2014

Isabel Bishop painted a behind-the-scenes” glimpse of her studio, where old-fashioned glass bottles and muted shades of brown, orange, and gray conjure the rich smells of linseed oil and turpentine. The clutter of bottles and boxes, lit with raking light in a dusky space, evokes Bishop’s more famous figural paintings, which often show crowds of people milling about in lively urban spaces.

Artist’s Table
Not on view
14 5817 12 in. (37.244.5 cm.)
Credit Line

Smithsonian American Art Museum

Gift of the Sara Roby Foundation

Mediums Description
oil on canvas
  • Still life – art tool
  • Still life – furniture – table
  • Still life – other – container
Object Number
Linked Open Data
Linked Open Data URI

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