Conversation Piece by Lilly Martin Spencer, ca. 1851–52
The only American woman painter of note in the antebellum period, Spencer specialized in domestic scenes. She used herself and her husband as models in many of her narrative works, including this one. The setting for the family group is likely the artist’s parlor. Many of the small objects decorating her room, such as the Limoges compote and the Carcel lamp, illustrate the taste of the time as well as Spencer’s French heritage.
source: MET Museum