The panoramic view of this seaside sanctuary, occupied by the most fashionable ladies of the leisure class, is likely the artist’s most ambitious tableau. Kaemmerer's elegant and lyrical composition is a well ordered frieze of figures stretching wide across the canvas on this brilliantly sunny expanse of sand. The clean and fresh air that comes in sprays off of the open sea is palpable and the dazzling summer sun puts the figures in the foreground in crisp relief, highlighting the meticulous details of their finery.
Based on the un-posed casualness of the scene and the artist’s obvious ability to capture a snapshot-like moment in time, one can imagine Kaemmerer himself standing at his massive easel observing and transcribing the scene before him. Instead, he has joined the bathers and situated himself in the right side of the composition, in a smart grey flannel suit, and he invites the viewer to do the same.
As Edward Strahan described the scene in Art Treasures of America: "here we have all the belles and dandies from all Dutchland, as well as those from France and Britain, blinding sunbeams which reduce everything to a chalky stare of light. The freshest flounces and modes of 1874 are displayed on the hired garden-chairs. The priest in broad hat and bands, feeling himself in a state of highest clarity... (and with his aristocratic beautiful parishioner especially), twirls his thumbs and leans over with that expression of delicate benevolence which tolerates even lightness, and which is more akin to worldliness than any other virtue the good man can select out of his repertory of sacred graces. A beautiful invalid reclines languidly, her feet supported by a stool; a fair fashionable girl bends over a brown fishermaiden who offers shells for sale. City children expose their pale legs to the breakers. The whole picture is intense with light, — symphony of blonde tones. At the right, I recognize my fellow pupil at Gérôme's, Henry Frederick Kaemmerer... the scene which but for him would have remained embryotic as that year's fashion plates" (Strahan p. 5).
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