About this work
Oil on canvas
40 1/4 x 25 1/2 in.
Philadelphia Museum of Art. Purchased with funds contributed by C.K. Williams, II 1999-50-1
In her own words...
At first there was only that one picture, a self-portrait. It was a modest canvas by present-day standards. But it filled my New York studio, the apartment’s back room, as if it had always been there. For one thing, it was the room; I had been struck, one day, by a fascinating array of doors—hall, kitchen, bathroom, studio—crowded together, soliciting my attention with their antic planes, light, shadows, imminent openings and shuttings. From there it was an easy leap to a dream of countless doors. Perhaps in a way it was a talisman for the things that were happening, an iteration of quiet event, line densities wrought in a crystal paperweight of time where nothing was expected to appear except the finished canvas and, later, a few snowflakes, for the season was Christmas, 1942, and Max was my Christmas present.
–from Birthday, Santa Monica: The Lapis Press, 1986, p. 14, and Between Lives: An Artist and Her World. New York: W.W. Norton & Company, 2001, pp. 62-63.