Eastman Johnson Catalogue Raisonné
Patricia Hills, PhD, Founder and Director | Abigael MacGibeny, MA, Project Manager
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Photo: Unknown
21.1 Girls Indoors

Johnson’s daughter, Ethel, was born in May 1870, and it is not surprising that Johnson would use her (but not exclusively) as a model for the many pictures of young girls in interiors—playing with dolls, warming their hands by a stove, reading, sleeping. Such pictures often include the same furniture, such as the prie dieu (church prayer bench or kneeler) seen in Family Cares and The Tea Party. Because they were genre paintings, not portraits, Johnson freely renders the facial features. Thus, it is not surprising that for paintings done circa 1873, the bodily types of the girls look like three-year-olds; whereas those done circa 1878, look more like eight-years-olds. —PH

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Hills no. 21.1.23
The Lesson
Alternate title: possibly The First Lesson
1874
Oil on board
22 1/2 x 19 in. (57.2 x 48.3 cm)
Signed and dated lower left: E. Johnson 1874
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Record last updated September 17, 2021. Please note that the information on this and all pages is periodically reviewed and subject to change.
Citation: Hills, Patricia. "The Lesson, 1874 (Hills no. 21.1.23)." Eastman Johnson Catalogue Raisonné. https://www.eastmanjohnson.org/catalogue/entry.php?id=275 (accessed on January 27, 2022).