Summer

Media - 1930.12.70 - SAAM-1930.12.70_1 - 638
Copied Kate Clifton Osgood Holmes, Summer, 1903, oil on canvas, Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of Dr. and Mrs. William Henry Holmes, 1930.12.70
Free to use

Artwork Details

Title
Summer
Date
1903
Dimensions
19 5814 58 in. (49.837.2 cm)
Credit Line
Gift of Dr. and Mrs. William Henry Holmes
Mediums
Mediums Description
oil on canvas
Classifications
Keywords
  • Allegory — season — summer
  • Figure female — full length
Object Number
1930.12.70

Artwork Description

In Summer a woman retreats to a shadowed interior to play quietly on her guitar. White curtains and the figure’s linen gown glow in the light from the window, suggesting the heat of the afternoon outside. Such scenes of solitary women playing music, reading books, or writing letters expressed an idea of domestic peace and refinement that became more desirable as the Gilded Age grew more ambitious and frenetic. The painting can also be seen as an emblem of Kate Holmes’s artistic talents and efforts: She was married to a prominent archaeologist, but made a name for herself in the Washington art world as a respected painter and teacher.