Houses Along the Lake
Edward A. Goodes (American, 1832-1910)
Oil-on-canvas, signed and dated 188?, bottom right corner. Stretcher retains a partial supplier’s label.
Painting: 12” x 22”
Frame: 17.75” x 27.75”
With its craggy mountains, dense trees and open sky, Goodes’ Houses Along the Lake recalls Hudson River School paintings and their celebration of the American landscape. The three white houses receding into space indicates that the land is sparsely populated; yet they also suggest that nature’s endless bounty is intended for man’s use, in keeping with the American sensibility of Manifest Destiny popularly embraced throughout the 19th century.
There are no cultivated fields or farm buildings in this painting, however. The Italianate style of the houses could signify that they are summer retreats for the wealthy, reinforced by the two figures at their leisure in a boat. While not specifically identified, the landscape depicted is similar to the lakes in upstate New York.
Goodes was active in Philadelphia between 1855 and 1868 and exhibited regularly at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts. He is listed in Who Was Who in American Art (Falk, 1999).