Edith Neff, Evening Light
Neff presents what appears to be a family gathered in the park at the end of a late summer day. Among her principal interests was capturing natural light at specific times of day and times of year. The moody twilight suggests a poetical reading and the classical subject of the Three Ages of Man; Neff positions herself in a long line of Western artists who interpret earthly existence as unfolding in distinct stages, from youth, to adulthood, to old age.
The model for the older seated man was Dr. Sobell, a friend of the artist’s mother. The two children who modeled for the painting pose with their father, artist Eugene Bakuskus, Neff’s colleague at the Philadelphia College of Art (now the University of the Arts).