From the Museum of Modern Art, New York, USA:
Director, Glenn Lowry: In 1914, at the beginning of World War I, Matisse's home in the Parisian suburb of Issy-les-Moulineaux was requisitioned by the French military. When he was permitted to return the next year, he came across a painting he had made as a student. It was a copy of a still life by the seventeenth-century Dutch painter Jan Davidsz de Heem. It inspired Matisse to make a new version, based on what he called "the methods of modern construction." Influenced by the Cubists, Matisse laid out the painting as a tightly organized grid.