Dining Room Painting Breakfast on the Piazza
Like his close friend Frank W. Benson, whose painting can be seen in the parlor across the hall, Edmund Tarbell (1862-1938) frequently used his family as subjects in his paintings. These weren’t portraits per se, but instead they were figures meant to evoke a particular moment in time – in this case a peaceful summer morning by the ocean. Tarbell grew up near Boston, trained there and in France, and returned to a successful career of teaching and painting portraits of well-to-do Americans. This painting depicts Tarbell’s wife and children at the family’s rented summer retreat in New Castle, New Hampshire. Completed in 1902, over the next five years it was exhibited in Pennsylvania, New York, Washington D.C. and London.