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Prints and Authors in the Time of Manet

Winslow Homer
American, 1836–1910

Chinese in New York—Scene in a Baxter Street Clubhouse

Wood engraving, 1874
Published in Harper’s Weekly, March 7, 1874
Gift of Mrs. Fred Steele, Mrs. Dean Corbett, and Mrs. George Seney in memory of their mother, Mrs. James R Easton, 1981.82

Winslow Homer, perhaps best known for his dramatic paintings of the sea, began his career as a designer of wood engravings for books and magazines such as Harper’s Weekly. Homer was a sharp observer of city life, and his favorite subjects were urban street scenes and social gatherings. Though he frequently depicted minorities with sympathy and dignity, Homer here drew on negative racial stereotypes to depict Chinese immigrants in New York City, suggesting a seamy underworld of drugs and gambling.