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Arthur Fitzwilliam Tait - Coming Home


Arthur Fitzwilliam Tait (1819-1905), British-American
Coming Home, 1872
OIL ON CANVAS , 13 1/2 X 21 1/2inches
Gift of Horace Fairbanks

Genre painters such as Arthur Fitzwilliam Tait often excelled at recounting stories in visual form. In this scene, the artist has arrayed his subjects from the upper right, where a mounted herdsman rides behind his cattle on their way home from pasture for the evening, around to the lower left where a minor drama unfolds. The lead cows have come across a group of ducks, and the ducklings' mother flaps her wings in defense of her fam­ily. Tail's animal scenes, such as this one, enjoyed great popularity with American audi­ences, which was only enhanced by his works' frequent reproduction and widespread sale in print form by the publishing house of Currier & Ives.