Reginald Marsh was a central figure in the depiction of life in New York City during the 1920s and 1930s. Marsh often visited Coney Island, which served as an inspiration for his paintings like Coney Island Beach, 1935, published 1936. The artwork shows crowded beach scenes and popular entertainment of ordinary people at play.
One of Marsh’s other famous artworks set in Coney Island is Wooden Horses, painted in 1936. Many of his paintings focused on jobless men on the Bowery, imbuing them with psychological depth without social protest or criticism about their lives.
Marsh’s work often included shock elements that made some viewers uncomfortable to hang his works publicly especially women. He depicted people candidly and honestly with great attention to detail despite being unsuitable for many collectors at that time.