From the estate of the artist, estate stamp verso.
From the late 1940s until 1969 the Barnetts spent their summers in a Princeton, MA farmhouse owned by Esther and Cornelia Forbes of Worcester, MA. There were several large chicken farms in the town, and many small farmers also kept chickens and sold eggs. The scenes of dressing hens most likely depict William Brooks, a farmer who lived down the road from Barnett’s studio. Here the artist plays up the genre interest of the subject. These studies have more in common with his work scenes of the 1930s and Vermont haying and auction paintings than with the very abstract and intensely colored close-up hen yards of 1947-8.