Skip to Content
Today Open today 11–8

Nantasket Beach

A work made of oil on canvas.
CC0 Public Domain Designation

Image actions

  • A work made of oil on canvas.




Emil Carlsen
American, born Denmark, 1853–1932

About this artwork

Emil Carlsen combined naturalism with a bright, light-filled palette, creating a seascape that harmonizes academic painting and Impressionism. Blue sky and white clouds fill much of the canvas. The scene portrays a leisurely moment: two figures rest in the sand and look out at the rolling waves while a woman with a parasol walks along the water’s edge. Seaside tourism in New England—a subject portrayed here by Carlsen and, more famously, by Winslow Homer (on view nearby)—increased in popularity during the late 19th century, offering a respite from growing industrialism.

Trained in architecture in Copenhagen, Carlsen immigrated in 1872 to Chicago, shifting his focus to painting. After further study in Paris, he relocated to Boston in 1876, the year he executed this work.


Currently Off View


Arts of the Americas


Emil Carlsen


Nantasket Beach


United States (Artist's nationality:)

Date  Dates are not always precisely known, but the Art Institute strives to present this information as consistently and legibly as possible. Dates may be represented as a range that spans decades, centuries, dynasties, or periods and may include qualifiers such as c. (circa) or BCE.



Oil on canvas


Signed and dated lower right: "Nantasket Beach S. EM. C. 76 26/6"


38.7 × 66.8 cm (15 1/4 × 26 5/16 in.)

Credit Line

Friends of American Art Collection

Reference Number


IIIF Manifest  The International Image Interoperability Framework (IIIF) represents a set of open standards that enables rich access to digital media from libraries, archives, museums, and other cultural institutions around the world.

Learn more.

Extended information about this artwork

Object information is a work in progress and may be updated as new research findings emerge. To help improve this record, please email . Information about image downloads and licensing is available here.


Sign up for our enewsletter to receive updates.

Learn more

Image actions