painting – 1930s

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Painting – 1930s. Federal Programs for the Arts Funding of art in post offices, schools and court houses Artists – tend to lean left, support working class John Reed Clubs Artists’ Union (1934) Art Front – Artists’ Union journal (1934-1937) - PowerPoint PPT Presentation


  • Painting 1930sFederal Programs for the ArtsFunding of art in post offices, schools and court housesArtists tend to lean left, support working classJohn Reed ClubsArtists Union (1934)Art Front Artists Union journal (1934-1937)Some see cause as class struggle against capitalismSome push for unions, not socialismMost want federal art programs

  • Public Works of Art Project (PWAP - 1933) Treasury Dept.Replaced by Section of Painting and Sculpture in the Treasury Dept. (1934)Joins (1935) with Treasury Relief Art Project (TRAP) and the Federal Art Project of the Works Progress Administration (FAP/WPA) is createdAs of 1935 - FAP/WPAFAP/WPA from 1935-1943, employs 1000s of artists painters, sculptorsHolger Cahill, directorInfluenced by John DeweyArt for all Americans, art distinctly AmericanArtists received weekly wage (3-5,000 employed)Preference for representational, narrative art

  • Treasury Section - 1935 (not a relief organization TRAP is)Edward Bruce, directorArtists compete for work in federal buildingsWork approved ahead of time and monitoredFunds most murals, though FAP/WPA funds someSpent $2.5 million, created 1,100 murals, 300 sculpturesFace greater restrictionsGiven themes local history, local industries, local flora and fauna, local pursuits, hunting and fishing, recreational activitiesNudity and poverty prohibited, slavery largely excludedNative Americans often depictedRealism not stipulated, but expectedRegionalism/Social Realism

  • Farm Security Administration - 1935 (FSA) (first called Resettlement Administration)Photographers - Walker Evans, Dorothea Lange, etc.Mexican MuralistsJose Orozco, David Siqueiros, and Diego RiveraMany murals throughout US address concerns of many US intellectuals and artists in early 30s

  • Rivera, Detroit Industry (South 1932-1933)

  • Regionalism/Social RealismPhilip Evergood (1901-1973)President of Artists Union, works in FAPPowerful depictions of struggles between workers and industrialists

  • Evergood, American Tragedy (1937)

  • Thomas Hart Benton (1889-1975) Thomas Hart Benton PBS Documentary

  • Benton, Parks, the Circus, the Klan, the Press (1933)

  • Benton, The Social History of the State of Missouri (1936)

  • John Steuart Curry (1897-1946)

    Tragic Prelude (1940)

  • Curry, Tragic Prelude (1940)