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Not at Home

The painting's title may seem curious, especially since there is clearly someone in this comfortably furnished domestic interior. In the past, however, the phrase "not at home" indicated that the occupants of the house were not available to receive visitors. This painting held a particularly personal meaning for Eastman Johnson; it is his wife, Elizabeth, whom we see climbing the stairs leading to more private areas of their residence on Manhattan's West Fifty-fifth Street.

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