September 23, 2011  |  Five for Friday
Five for Friday: How Do You Like Them Apples?

Five for Friday, written by a variety of MoMA staff members, is our attempt to spotlight some of the compelling, charming, and downright curious works in the Museum’s rich collection.

Like every good New Englander, I eagerly await the start of the fall season and the bounty it brings. From the eye candy of fall fashion to the literal harvest of root vegetables, fall is arguably the most abundant time of the year. There’s just as much to savor in works from the Museum’s collection, and below I’ve “picked” a few of my favorite apples that MoMA has to offer:

1. Paul Cézanne. Still Life with Apples. 1895-98

A favorite subject in his still life paintings, Paul Cézanne painted hundreds of examples of the fruit throughout his career. You can take an even closer look at this example, on MoMA’s Google Art Project page.

2. Ellsworth Kelly. Apples. 1949

Although best known for his color block paintings in red, blue, and green, it’s the simplicity and serenity of Ellsworth Kelly’s fruit and flora lithographs that I really love.

3. Apple Inc., Steve Jobs and Jerry Manock. Macintosh 128K Home Computer. 1983

The Apple that started it all, the first MacIntosh home computer with Graphical User Interface, designed in 1983. When it was first released it sold for $2,495—nearly twice the cost of today’s iPhone, iPad, and MacBook combined!

4. Paul Klee. Still Life with Four Apples. (1909)

Klee’s dark and moody bowl of fruit looks ripe for baking—apfelkuchen anyone?

5. William H. Martin. A Load of Good Iowa Apples. 1909

Martin’s popular photographic postcards used the darkroom trickery of exposing two different negatives on the same emulsified paper. He used images like these oversize apples—or others of gigantic ears of corn, geese, hares, etc.—to create works that skillfully combine the absurd and the surreal.