The tradition of still-life painting in Philadelphia is quite evident in Milne Ramsey, for it is this genre that dominates much of his life’s work. The Philadelphia-born Ramsey studied at the PAFA. He left for Paris in the late 1860s and resided there for about two decades, with occasional trips back to Philadelphia. It was during his European period that this sumptuous still life, composed primarily of Oriental objects, was painted, dated 1872. Ramsey was exceptional at depicting complex linen tablecloths with folds and subtle shades of white and cream colors. I had seen a catalogue and magnificent exhibition of Ramsey’s work in 1974 at Chapellier Gallery and became familiar with his paintings. After living in the Far East for some years and developing a modest taste for Chinese bronzes, porcelain and other objects, upon returning to the United States in 1981, I was primed for paintings with an Oriental theme. In 1984, I saw this distinctive still life at Grand Central Gallery and jumped on it right away. It took some negotiation for time-payments, but we eventually came to an agreement. Unquestionably, the artist arranged a mixture of both Japanese and Chinese objects—which doesn’t bother me, it works artistically—but, and I’m going out on a limb here, I do not recall ever seeing an Oriental-themed still life executed by an American artist dated earlier than 1872. This statement will surely generate some reader response!