Sold to a private collector
Philip Little (American, 18571942)
Signed lower right: Philip Little
Titled, signed, and dated on reverse
Oil on canvas, 29-1/2 x 36 inches
Courtesy of Stephen B. O'Brien, Jr. Fine Arts
While most artists of his day painted portraits as a means of supporting themselves, Philip Little had the financial independence to exclusively paint subjects of interest to him. His father's wealth came from ownership of the textile manufacturing company Pacific Mills, which allowed Little to concentrate on painting New England landscapes and marine scenes. The impressionistic oil Making Harbor was a labor of love for the artist. Little spent the better part of four years, 1921-1925, on this masterwork, continuously reworking the composition.
Philip Little was born in Swampscott, Mass., and attended the Lowell Institute School at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He received further training in draftsmanship and lithography at the Forbes Lithograph Company of Boston. Little studied at the Boston Museum School from 1881 to 1882, along with fellow impressionist and lifelong friend, Frank W. Benson, with whom he shared a studio in Salem, Mass.