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lower left: Childe Hassam 1902


Consigned by the artist 1931 to (Macbeth Galleries, New York); sold 1934 to New Britain Museum of American Art, Connecticut; sold 1952 to (Vose Galleries, Boston); sold 1952 to John Fox, Boston, and Fairfield, Connecticut; (Wildenstein & Co., New York); sold 20 January 1966 to Ailsa Mellon Bruce [1901-1969], Long Island, New York; bequest 1970 to NGA.

[1] Provenance according to NGA curatorial files and the Ailsa Mellon Bruce notebook now in NGA archives.

Exhibition History

Possibly Newark Museum, New Jersey, 1931 (Newark has no record).
One Man's Taste in Contemporary Art, Addison Gallery, Phillips Academy, Andover, Massachusetts, 1932, no. 39.
Columbia University, New York, 1934.
Extended loan for use by The White House, Washington, D.C., 1970-1975.
Extended loan for use by the Secretary, U.S. Department of Treasury, Washington, D.C., 1979-1980.
Extended loan for use by Vice President and Mrs. George Bush, Washington, D.C., 1981-1987.
Child Hassam in Connecticut, Florence Griswold Museum, Old Lyme, Connecticut, 1987-1988, no. 4 (cat. by Kathleen M. Burnside).
American Light: Selections from the National Gallery of Art, Art Museum of Western Virginia, Roanoke, May-August 1998, no cat.
Treasures of Light: Paintings from the National Gallery of Art, Dixon Gallery and Gardens, Memphis, March-April 1998, no cat.
The Cos Cob Art Colony: Impressionists on the Connecticut Shore, National Academy of Design Museum, New York; Museum of Fine Arts, Houston; Denver Art Museum, 2001-2002, no. 48, repro.
Childe Hassam, American Impressionist, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, 2004, unnumbered catalogue, fig. 158.
Loan to display with permanent collection, Academy Art Museum, Easton, Maryland, 2007-2008.
Oysters, the Pearls of Long Island Sound, Bruce Museum of Arts and Science, Greenwich, Connecticut, 2013-2014, no catalogue.

Technical Summary

The plain-weave fabric support has a moderately tight and somewhat coarse weave. The painting has been lined but the tacking margins remain intact. The even, gray ground layer may be a commercial preparation. Over it, the artist applied an overall, gray imprimatura layer that is used as an integral part of the composition. The paint, applied with short, evenly spaced strokes, allows touches of the gray underlayer to show through. The same brushwork gives the water a scintillating, fluid appearance. The somewhat flattened appearance of the paint layer may be the result of a past lining process. Minor paint losses are concentrated in the lower right, upper left, and lower left corners. The varnish has not discolored.


Adams, Adeline. Childe Hassam. New York, 1938: 85.
American Paintings: An Illustrated Catalogue. National Gallery of Art, Washington, 1980: 172, repro.
Williams, William James. A Heritage of American Paintings from the National Gallery of Art. New York, 1981: 192, repro., as Oyster Sloop.
Burnside, Kathleen M. Childe Hassam in Connecticut. Exh. cat. Florence Griswold Museum. Old Lyme, 1987: 10-11, no. 4.
Larkin, Susan G. "Light, Time, and Tide: Theodore Robinson at Cos Cob." The American Art Journal, XXIII (1991): fig. 27.
American Paintings: An Illustrated Catalogue. National Gallery of Art, Washington, 1992: 196, repro.
Kelly, Franklin, with Nicolai Cikovsky, Jr., Deborah Chotner, and John Davis. American Paintings of the Nineteenth Century, Part I. The Collections of the National Gallery of Art Systematic Catalogue. Washington, D.C., 1996: 280-283, color repro.

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