William James Glackens was an artist associated with several movements: Ashcan School, Realism, American Impressionism, and Early American Modernism. He was known for painting daily life in New York City at the turn of the 20th century. One of his most famous paintings is “Skating in Central Park,” which depicts affluent New Yorkers on horse-drawn carriages parading through the park.
Glackens utilized ribbon-like brushstrokes, similar to Pierre-Auguste Renoir’s style. This technique enhances the movement and energy created by the painting’s subjects. The people depicted are wrapped up in layers of clothing and wearing hats to keep warm while they enjoy a day out at the park.
“Skating in Central Park” is part of The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s collection in New York. It showcases Glackens’ exceptional talent for capturing everyday life within a historical context; it provides viewers with an intimate look into what leisure activities used to be like nearly 100 years ago.