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[AC] Mead Art Museum at Amherst College; [HC] Hampshire College Art Gallery;
[HD] Historic Deerfield; [MH] Mount Holyoke College Art Museum; [MH SK] The Joseph Allen Skinner Museum at Mount Holyoke College; [SC] Smith College Museum of Art; [UM] University Museum of Contemporary Art at UMASS Amherst


Maker(s):Carr, Samuel S.
Culture:American (1837 - 1908)
Title:Beach Scene
Date Made:ca. 1879
Materials:oil on canvas
Place Made:United States
Measurements:stretcher: 12 x 20 in.; 30.48 x 50.8 cm
Narrative Inscription:  undated, signed at lower right in oil: S.S. CARR
Accession Number:  SC 1934.3.10
Credit Line:Bequest of Annie Swan Coburn (Mrs. Lewis Larned Coburn)

flat beach with men, women and children in full dress, one man in center with camera on a tripod; landscape; water; people; costume/uniform; leisure/recreation

Label Text:
"Beach Scene" depicts Coney island when it was a fashionable and popular resort in the late 19th century. Several details in Carr's composition hint at the growing commercialism of this site: the photographer taking a family portrait, the man giving donkey rides and the Punch and Judy show. Carr, however, omits the beach signs that were then common, including advertisements for hotels, saloons, acrobatic shows, shooting galleries, and hot dogs.

Originally from England and trained at the Royal School of Design in Chester, Carr settled in Brooklyn in 1863 and is primarily known for his genre scenes of Coney Island and Brooklyn parks. As was his practice, a number of figures in "The Beach Scene" are repeated in other paintings.

The jewel-like color accents and complex placement of figure groups make this one of Carr's most successful paintings.

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