James Hamilton : Beach at Atlantic City
James Hamilton (Beach at Atlantic City)

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Artist: James Hamilton
Title: Beach at Atlantic City
Media: Oil on canvas, 11 5/8 × 22 1/4 inches
11 5/8 × 22 1/4 inches
Description: Signed at lower right: “J Hamilton”
Label (printed): “Loan to/BROOKLYN MUSEUM/from/3.66.210/Preston.”
Exhibited : Brooklyn Museum, Brooklyn, New York, James Hamilton, 1819–1878: American Marine Painter (March 28–May 22, 1966), no. 55

For the last twenty years of his career Hamilton painted scenic areas around Philadelphia and was active in Atlantic City, Cape May, and Cumberland County in New Jersey. Located about 65 miles northeast of Philadelphia on New Jersey’s south shore, Atlantic City became an immensely popular summer resort after it was developed and made accessible by the Camden and Atlantic Railroad in 1854. Hamilton probably painted these two views of Atlantic City in 1868, when he is known to have visited the city in August and September through a number of dated paintings, among them The Sea at Atlantic City (Sewell C. Biggs Museum of American Art, Dover, Delaware).1 It is likely that these paintings were related to On the Beach at Atlantic City (location unknown) that the artist exhibited at the Pennsylvania Academy in 1868.2 When Beach at Atlantic City was exhibited at the Brooklyn Museum in 1966, it was singled out for praise by John I. H. Baur, who commented that it was “delicate, sketchy, filled with a subdued and silvery light, almost Whistlerian in its atmospheric unity.”3


1. William H. Gerdts, The Sewell C. Biggs Collection of American Art: A Catalogue, vol. 2, Paintings and Sculpture (Dover, Del.: Biggs Museum of American Art, 2002), p. 301.

2. What is presumably a study for that painting is illustrated in Artists of 19 th Century Philadelphia, Philadelphia Collection, vol. V (Philadelphia: Schwarz Gallery, 1978), pl. 7.

3. John I. H. Baur, “A Romantic Impressionist: James Hamilton,” The Brooklyn Museum Bulletin, vol. 12 (spring 1951), p. 6.

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Price: This item is no longer available for sale
Inventory: RS 5116
Category: •a:American•a:New Jersey•a:Philadelphia•Atlantic City•beach•marine•New Jersey•nineteenth century•
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