Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Rockwell Visits a Country Editor

One of the paintings in tomorrow's auction of American Art at Christie's is "Norman Rockwell Visits a Country Editor."

Norman Rockwell Visits a Country Editor, 1946, oil, 33 x 63 in.
It was published in Saturday Evening Post in 1946, one of a series of portrayals of American life that Rockwell did for the magazine in the guise of artist/reporter. 

The mural-like painting commemorates Rockwell's visit to the Monroe County Appeal, a small-town newspaper in Paris, Missouri. Rockwell took photos of the setting and then assembled the composition back in his studio.

He donated the painting to the National Press Club, which is now putting it up for sale. It is estimated between $10 and 15 million, though it will probably exceed the estimate. The proceeds will benefit the National Press Club and the National Press Club Journalism Institute.
Norman Rockwell Visits a Country Editor at Christie's
Thanks, Matthew Innis


Steve said...

Rockwell gives us so much storytelling enjoyment in this painting. I love the rhythm of it -- I tend to read it from right to left, beginning with NR leaning in with his portfolio and ending with that tableau featuring the typist and the copyboy. She makes eye contact and smiles at him. From the rear profile of his face, the curve of his cheek, you can tell he is smiling back at her. It's easy to imagine his daily sprint past her typewriter being the high point of his day.

This painting is one among many gems in the Christie show. Below is the URL for the catalog. If I were Charley Parker writing about this in Lines and Colors I would issue his famous Time Sink Warning -- there is so much to savor and the Christie website allows for easy zooming in on the paintings.

Glenn Tait said...

I love the composition in this painting, there are a number of entry points into the picture and they all work. Which helps underscore the busyness of the newspaper office without ever losing the viewer.

There is a spread in Guptil's "Norman Rockwell Illustrator" on pages 92-93 showing size as sections of the two gents in front of the window, one is the colour sketch and the other the finished painting.

Roberto said...

...and a 'Happy 30th Anniversary' to Calvin and Hobbs, too! -RQ

Roberto said...

Fabio Porta said...

I'm reading Guptill's biography of Rockwell (Norman Rockwell, Illustrator), and came across this just yesterday. Amazing piece, like all others. Isn't it Rockwell himself on the far right, opening the door?

lee kline said...

Norman Rockwell and Walt Disney are the two men most responsible for folks my age (I'm 75) becoming graphic Designers. They proved to a kid that an artist could do amazing things and get paid well and become famous as well. Many of us in our formative years disavowed those men as "impure" and "compromised," but with age comes wisdom, one hopes. Everyone my age who made a living in Graphic Design agrees with me. "Yep, it was those guys who fired my imagination."

Rich said...

Everything is framed in Rockwell's painting:
All those framed pictures on the wall are just a start. Beyond that we have more rectangular lights and darks, including Norman with his portfolio & pipe, we have the contrasted man reading the (rectangular) newspaper, we have the (light-to-dark-framed) man on the typewriter as well...and lots more, composed down to the minutest detail:

To me this looks almost fractal.