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Glenn Adamson is a senior scholar at the Yale Center for British Art, New Haven. Eric Banks is a New York–based writer and critic.

Richard Meyer is Robert and Ruth Halperin Professor in Art History at Stanford University. Shirley Reece-Hughes is curator of paintings and sculpture at the Amon Carter Museum of American Art, Fort Worth.

Published by the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York Distributed by Yale University Press, New Haven and London 180 color and 30 black-and-white illustrations Jacket illustration: The Midnight Ride of Paul Revere, 1931. Oil on composition board, 30 × 40 in. (76.2 × 101.6 cm). The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Arthur Hoppock Hearn Fund, 1950 (pl. 41). © Figge Art Museum, successors to the Estate of Nan Wood Graham/Licensed by VAGA, New York, NY

AMERICAN GOTHIC AND OTHER FABLES

Emily Braun is Distinguished Professor of 20th Century European and American Art at Hunter College and the Graduate Center, City University of New York.

GR ANT WOOD

Barbara Haskell is a curator at the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York.

GR ANT WOOD –––

AMERICAN GOTHIC AND OTHER FABLES

GRANT WOOD

AMERICAN GOTHIC AND OTHER FABLES Barbara Haskell Contributions by Glenn Adamson, Eric Banks, Emily Braun, Richard Meyer, and Shirley Reece-Hughes This comprehensive study of Grant Wood (1891–1942) is packed with extensive new scholarship and provides fresh insight into the career of one of the key figures of twentieth-century American art. Working primarily in the traditional genres of portraiture and landscape, Wood infused his paintings with a palpable tension that is grounded in the profound epistemological and social upheavals of his time. Exploring Wood’s oeuvre from a variety of perspectives, this book presents the artist’s work in all of its subtle complexity and eschews the idea that Wood can be categorized simply as a Regionalist painter. Generously illustrated, Grant Wood: American Gothic and Other Fables includes several works published here for the first time, as well as new photography of other paintings. The essays in the volume contextualize Wood’s work within a much larger art-historical framework than has previously been considered; renowned scholars address topics such as the artist’s literary influences, the role of gender identity in his paintings, and the parallels between Wood’s work and the contemporaneous European movements of Surrealism, Neue Sachlichkeit, Precisionism, Art Deco design, and the Arts and Crafts movement. Through a careful reconsideration of Wood’s career, creative process, technique, iconography, and critical reception, this book reveals for the first time the deep significance and cosmopolitan breadth of Wood’s artistic vision.

Jacket design by McCall Associates

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GRANT WOOD


GR ANT WOOD –––

AMERICAN GOTHIC AND OTHER FABLES

BARBARA HASKELL

W I T H C O N T R I B U T I O N S BY Glenn Adamson Eric Banks Emily Braun Richard Meyer Shirley Reece-Hughes Whitney Museum of American Art, New York Distributed by Yale University Press, New Haven and London


CONTENTS ___________ ___________

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FOREWORD A DA M D. W E I N B E R G 10

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS 12

GRANT WOOD

THROUGH THE PAST, DARKLY BARBARA HASKELL 38

WILLOW, WEEP FOR ME G L E N N A DA M S O N 48

MOMENTS OF DISCOVERY

GRANT WOOD’S THEATRICAL PAINTINGS S H I R L E Y R E EC E - H U G H E S 58

LIKE A BOOK

GRANT WOOD’S LITERARY ASSOCIATIONS E R I C B A N KS 66

CRYPTIC CORN

MAGIC REALISM AND THE ART OF GRANT WOOD E M I LY B R AU N 78

GRANT WOOD GOES GAY RICHARD MEYER 88

PLATES 201

GRANT WOOD A CHRONICLE

BARBARA HASKELL

SELECTED BIBLIOGRAPHY 258 CHECKLIST OF THE EXHIBITION 263 LENDERS TO THE EXHIBITION 266 INDEX 255


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GRANT WOOD

THROUGH THE PAST, DARKLY ___________ ___________

BARBARA HASKELL


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I N OCTOBER 1930, thirty-nine-year-old Grant Wood of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, submitted American Gothic to the Art Institute of Chicago’s annual exhibition of American painting and sculpture. Accepted into the show after narrowly escaping rejection, it was only the third painting by the artist ever to be shown outside his home state.1 Two days before the exhibition opened to the public, the Chicago Evening Post reproduced American Gothic on the front page of its art section, initiating a flurry of requests from newspapers and magazines across the country for photographs of what was presumed to be a portrait of a husband and wife. The image of the sullen Midwestern couple, oddly incongruent in age, captured the country’s imagination and catapulted Wood into the national spotlight overnight. Since then, American Gothic has arguably become the most recognized and popular American artwork of the twentieth century, its iconic status reflected in countless parodies and caricatures of individuals from across the political and social spectrum. People who know little about American art and may not even know Grant Wood’s name know the painting. Whether they see it as satirical or celebratory, they understand it to be indisputably American. And yet what to make of the “Americanness” of this most American of artworks? Just as the seemingly straightforward appearance of the painting’s protagonists becomes strangely enigmatic the longer one looks at the picture, so too does the declarative American in the work’s title dissolve into a question: What precisely does American Gothic mythologize? Is it the painting’s presumptive commentary on American identity—or something else that makes the work so captivating? Exploring those questions invariably leads to an examination of the life and artistic output of Grant Wood, whose relatively short mature career spanned some of the most trying, soul-searching years for the United States as it grappled with the aftermath of an economic meltdown and populist backlash against elitism and engaged in vigorous, sometimes bitter, debates over its core national identity. Wood was at the center of those deliberations, serving as both prime exemplar and chief proselytizer for a regionally based, democratic art that stood in opposition to foreign-based styles and the creeping standardization of American culture caused by industrialization and urbanization. Wood’s mature career began in 1929, the year of the great stock market crash and the beginning of a decade of national introspection. Faced with the trauma of social and economic collapse, Americans sought reassurance and strength in what novelist John Dos Passos identified as knowledge of the “kind of firm ground other men, belonging to generations before us, have found to stand on.”2 In the first thirty years of the twentieth century, as the country’s population shifted from farms and small towns to cities, rural areas had increasingly come to be seen as parochial and backward, and were treated with ambivalence or derision. That changed in the 1930s. What emerged as a powerful strain in popular culture during the decade was a pronounced reverence for the values of community, hard work, and self-reliance that were seen as fundamental to the national character and embodied most fully in America’s small towns and on its farms. As the celebration of glamour and affluence that had characterized the Jazz Age yielded to nostalgia for the perceived simplicity and self-sufficiency of the rural communities so many Americans had left behind, the Midwest in particular came to be seen as emblematic of the “real America,” free from the moral decay and enervating foreign influence associated with cities. As Dorothy Gale would exclaim upon returning to Kansas in the classic 1939 American film The Wizard of Oz: “Isn’t it funny—this is the place I was looking for all the time!”3


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The social and political climate in which Wood’s art flourished bears certain striking similarities to America today, as national identity and the tension between urban and rural areas reemerge as polarizing issues in a country facing the consequences of globalization and the technological revolution. Yet however compelling Wood’s art is as a window onto American consciousness, its enduring power lies in its mesmerizing psychological dimension. With the benefit of hindsight, it seems clear that Wood’s paintings were primarily expressions of his inner life, much like those of his fellow American realist Edward Hopper, whose work communicates a similar eerie silence and isolation. Like Hopper, Wood portrayed the solitude and alienation of contemporary experience. By fusing meticulously observed reality with imagined memories of childhood, he crafted unsettling images of estrangement and apprehension that pictorially manifest the disquiet of modern life. Clues to the source of the anxiety underlying Wood’s purported paeans to his native Midwest begin to emerge by looking into the artist’s biography. Born in 1891 on a farm near Anamosa, Iowa, Wood was only ten years old when his father, Maryville, died of a heart attack and the family moved to Cedar Rapids. Thirty years later, Wood would recall the experiences of his early years on the farm as “clearer than any I have known since.”4 The premature death of his father crystallized the dichotomy Wood felt between his own self-identity and what he imagined was expected of him as the son of a Quaker farmer. Whether or not Wood was consciously homosexual, as has been argued recently, he clearly bore a conflicted relationship to stereotypes of masculinity in the Midwest, as epitomized for him by his father, whom he romanticized as “more a god than a father.”5 Friends in Cedar Rapids described the artist as pudgy, nearsighted, and inordinately shy. He was known to sway from side to side when talking to people and to avoid looking them in the eye. Wood’s apprehension over his inability to emulate what he perceived as his father’s infallibility and rugged individualism was exacerbated by his childhood inclination toward creative pursuits and his eventual decision to become a professional artist. He recalled becoming an “outcast” in Cedar Rapids after announcing at the age of thirty his intention to visit Paris and of offending his fellow Iowans when he returned home with bohemian mannerisms and a beard that seemed all the more alarming because it was red.6 “I thought I might try to get along with folks in Iowa, but I concluded it wasn’t worth it,” he said years later.7 In his 1935 self-portrait, The Return from Bohemia (pl. 67), he portrayed himself surrounded by family and friends who survey him with what he described as “contempt, scorn and an I-know-I-could-do-it-better look.”8 The contradiction between the well-publicized image he crafted of himself as a folksy “farmer-painter” and his inner emotional life did not go unnoticed by those close to him.9 Paul Engle, the Iowa poet who knew Wood in Cedar Rapids, called him “a gifted, fine, complicated person . . . [whose] outward cheerful, plain-person image concealed a troubled life.”10 What Engle characterized as the artist’s “peculiar and private problems” will likely remain at least partially a mystery: in an effort to sanitize Wood’s legacy by eliminating from it anything that might be unflattering, his sister, Nan, burned his letters after his death and barred would-be biographers from writing about him.11 Still, the portrait that emerges from an examination of what we do know about Wood, both as a public and private person, combined with a closer inspection of his art, reveals a conflicted, complex relationship between the artist and the homeland he professed to adore. In its unresolved tensions, this may be a truer expression of the American experience than Wood might ever have imagined, even some seventy-five years after his death.


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___________ ___________ Wood began his career as a decorative artist in high school, studying the lessons of Ernest Batchelder and Arthur Wesley Dow in the pages of the Craftsman and Composition, respectively. After graduating in 1910, he attended the Handicraft Guild in Minneapolis for two summers; in 1913, he joined the esteemed Kalo Arts and Crafts Community House in the Chicago suburb of Park Ridge, Illinois, and the following year he opened the Volund Crafts Shop with a fellow Kalo craftsman, Kristoffer Haga. The inclusion of his jewelry and metalwork in the Art Institute of Chicago’s prestigious decorative arts annual exhibitions in 1914 and 1915 augured a promising future for Wood as a decorative artist. But when lack of sales forced him to close the shop in 1916, he returned to Cedar Rapids and began devoting himself to fine art. Although he continued to earn income well into the early 1930s designing and furnishing homes in Cedar Rapids in partnership with contractor Bruce McKay, he saw himself primarily as a painter. Yet even as his focus shifted to fine art, his ideology and pictorial vocabulary remained grounded in Arts and Crafts.12 To this early training he owed his later use of flat, decorative patterns and sinuous, intertwined organic forms as well as his belief that art was a democratic enterprise that must be accessible to the average person, not just the elite. Throughout his life, Wood retained the populist credo that “a work which does not make contact with the public is lost.”13 Unlike the American Arts and Crafts movement, which developed various regional idioms quite different from the British movement inaugurated by William Morris, American fine art remained indebted to European models. Aesthetic independence was especially problematic for artists in the Midwest, who felt culturally inferior not only to Europe but to the East Coast. When Wood began painting, he did what most of his fellow Midwestern artists did: he emulated a foreign style as filtered through American practitioners in the East—in his case, Impressionism (fig. 1). The paintings that resulted were indistinguishable from those of many of his peers, but his imitation of an

Fig. 1. The Horsetraders (Two Horsetraders), 1918. Oil on composition board, 10 1⁄ 2 × 13 1⁄ 2 in. (26.7 × 34.3 cm). Cedar Rapids Museum of Art, Iowa; gift of Harriet Y. and John B. Turner II 72.12.28


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accepted style proved to be a good choice in Cedar Rapids, whose residents purchased his paintings and commissioned him to undertake a variety of projects, from murals to window displays and advertisements.

Fig. 2. Interior of the Iowa Corn Room, Hotel Montrose, dining room, Cedar Rapids, Iowa, 1925 Fig. 3. Soldier in the War of 1812 (Cannoneer), 1927. Ink and graphite on paper, 79 3⁄ 4 × 22 3⁄ 4 in. (202.6 × 57.8 cm). Figge Art Museum, Davenport, Iowa, City of Davenport Art Collection, Grant Wood Archive; museum purchase with funds provided by the Friends of Art Acquisition Fund 1965.8

Wood’s local success notwithstanding, the widespread conviction that the Midwest was culturally impoverished led him to make three separate visits to Paris: for three months in 1920, followed by a longer, fourteen-month sojourn in 1923–24, and finally in 1926 for a solo summer exhibition of his work at Galerie Carmine that he financed with help from Cedar Rapids patrons.14 The show’s meager sales and paltry press attention forced Wood to reevaluate his art. His Cedar Rapids friend William Shirer, the journalist and later author of The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich, who saw Wood in Paris soon after the show, later recalled that the artist determined that summer to return to Iowa and paint local subject matter.15 Wood’s own accounts of when he decided to cease painting quaint, French-looking subjects would vary over time, but he always framed his decision as a sudden insight, telling a journalist as late as 1940 that when he returned to Cedar Rapids from his final trip to Paris in 1926, he suddenly saw “like a revelation, my neighbors in Cedar Rapids, their clothes, their homes, the patterns on their tablecloths and curtains, the tools they use. I suddenly saw all this commonplace stuff as material for art. Wonderful material!”16 Wood’s stories casting his embrace of native subject matter as an epiphany were misleading, part of the homespun, naïve image he later created for himself. Indeed, he had begun to incorporate local material into his art as early as the fall of 1925, when he and fellow local artist Edgar Britton decorated the dining room of Eugene Eppley’s Hotel Montrose in Cedar Rapids with corn imagery: corncob chandeliers, a 360-degree panoramic mural of a field of harvested corn, and a frieze inscribed with stanzas from the “Iowa Corn Song” (fig. 2). Eppley would commission the pair to create two more Corn Rooms upon Wood’s return from Paris in 1926—one for the Martin Hotel in Sioux City, and the other for the Hotel Chieftain in Council Bluffs, a commission that also included a second dining room, for which the artists made three mural-size paintings depicting the early Mormon settlement of the town (see pp. 210 and 211). At the opening of the Martin Hotel’s Corn Room in October 1926, Wood spoke to the press of the burgeoning “feeling for the culture and art in this section of the country, which is rapidly making it a place which New York artists look to with longing.”17 The statement was true—but for literature, not for visual art.18 In 1926 the art world still considered the Midwest to be provincial; New York artists were decidedly not looking to it with “longing.” In literature, however, the situation was different. Even before the sensational commercial success of Sinclair Lewis’s Main Street in 1920 and Babbitt in 1922, Midwestern authors were receiving acclaim, with none other than H. L. Mencken proclaiming: “With two exceptions, there is not a single American novelist of the younger generation . . . who has not sprung from the Middle Empire that has Chicago for its capital.”19 Mencken’s frequent inclusion of Midwestern writers in Smart Set and American


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Mercury—magazines Wood read assiduously—confirmed the growing consensus regarding the merits of the region’s literature. A month before Wood’s Martin Hotel Corn Room opened, an essay by Ruth Suckow on her home state of Iowa appeared in the American Mercury in which she described how Iowa’s original settlers had viewed culture as deriving “almost wholly from the Eastern States and particularly from New England,” but that, now, “a native culture has begun to work its way out. . . . [The prairie States have begun] to accept their own country as having its natural claims to a natural place in the world . . . at last timid Iowa has dared to lift its eyes even in the presence of the East.”20 Her belief that Iowa—and indeed every area of the country— possessed a unique character was shared by the editors of the Midland, the influential Iowa-based literary magazine founded in 1915 by John T. Frederick to encourage regional writing and challenge the centralization of publishing in New York. The Midland promoted the idea that good writing depended on the author’s deep familiarity with his or her own people and landscape. The magazine’s frequent inclusion of the writings of Suckow and Cedar Rapids poet Jay Sigmund ensured its circulation among that city’s cultural elite, especially members of the Garlic Club, an informal group of artists, writers, actors, and musicians that included both Sigmund and Wood. At the club’s daily lunches, Wood was party to countless discussions about the richness of America’s regional diversity and the need to preserve it in the face of creeping homogenization. Sigmund’s influence on Wood cannot be overestimated. The poet, who prided himself on never traveling farther from Iowa than Chicago, firmly believed that writers should stay close to home and write about the people and places they knew best. “Poetry is not a thing of far places,” Sigmund insisted. “You can see it, you can find it right at hand.”21 The poet’s work, which centered on the landscape and people of Iowa’s Wapsipinicon River valley, helped to convince Wood of the beauty of local subject matter. So too did Sigmund’s reproach of Wood for extolling the beauties of Paris and for being a “French copy-cat”— and, conversely, the poet’s praise of the artist for turning his attention to the barns and landscapes of his home state, albeit with a lingering commitment to European-influenced Impressionism.22 The combined influence of the Midland and Sigmund’s cajoling might have caused Wood to reevaluate his style earlier had he not been distracted by the commission he received in January 1927 to design a twenty-four-foot-high stained-glass window honoring American war dead for the planned Veterans Memorial Building in Cedar Rapids— a project that would occupy much of his time during the next eighteen


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months (fig. 3; pl. 25). During the period he was researching and designing his window, Wood continued to paint Impressionist landscapes and commissioned portraits, whose illusionistically rendered subjects he often set against decorative backgrounds (fig. 4). For the portrait he made of John B. Turner, the father of his most important Cedar Rapids patron, he used the subject’s prized 1869 map of Linn County as a background (fig. 5). While this inclusion foreshadows Wood’s subsequent work, inspiration for it seems to have derived more from the congruence between the ages of the map and the sitter than from the scenes of nineteenth-century Cedar Rapids that bordered the map (pl. 27). Only later would such images become significant to the artist.

Fig. 4. Portrait of Sally Stamats, 1927. Oil on canvas board, 15 1 ⁄ 2 × 13 1 ⁄ 4 in. (39.4 × 33.7 cm). Cedar Rapids of Museum of Art, Iowa; gift of Sally Stamats Hedges, in memory of Mr. and Mrs. Herbert S. Stamats 92.5

As Wood moved toward embracing subject matter rooted in his native Iowa, it would paradoxically be his return to Europe in the fall of 1928 to supervise fabrication of his stained-glass window at an art glass company in Munich that would decisively influence his future painting style. Indeed, in subsequent accounts, Wood would claim that he had gone to Europe on this trip knowing what to paint, 23 but not knowing how. The precision required to fabricate the window rekindled a delight in craftsmanly exactitude and detail that he had abandoned in adopting the loose brushwork of Impressionism. Evaluating the art he saw in Munich through this lens, he found himself preferring the Northern Renaissance paintings in the city’s Alte Pinakothek over the Expressionist canvases that dominated the contemporary art exhibition at the Glaspalast. Wood had admired Flemish and German art of the fifteenth century on his previous trips to Europe; now, primed by his work in stained glass, he saw the precision of masters such as Hans Memling and Albrecht Dürer with fresh eyes. His appreciation for pictorial clarity drew his attention as well to the early nineteenth-century German Nazarene paintings in the Pinakothek by artists such as Johann Friedrich Overbeck and Peter von Cornelius, who likewise had admired the clear delineation of shapes, meticulous details, and flat color application of their fifteenth-century forbears (fig. 6). Although Wood would mention only the Early Renaissance artists in later accounts of his time in Munich, his subsequent work suggests the shared influence of the Nazarenes, whose depictions of frozen, expectant gestures would become a consistent feature of his art. It took Wood more than six months after returning to Cedar Rapids in late 1928 to apply the insights he had gleaned in Munich to his own work. The impetus came in June 1929, when his Turner portrait was awarded grand prize at the Iowa State Fair, marking the artist’s first major recognition outside his hometown. Buoyed by this success, he decided to paint a portrait of his mother in the same style as the Turner picture. With his memory of the landscape backgrounds in fifteenthcentury Flemish and German portraits still fresh, he painted her half-length figure in front of a rolling Iowa farmscape, employing the translucent glazing technique of the Old Masters to obtain a rich depth of color (pl. 29). That October, Wood submitted the portrait, titled Woman with Plants, to the Art Institute of Chicago’s annual painting and sculpture exhibition. Its acceptance was a defining moment for Wood, who told Edward Rowan, director of Cedar Rapids’s Little Gallery, that


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he felt he had “stumbled upon something which would stand some investigation.”24 Rowan enthusiastically concurred, praising his friend for “doing with pigment what Jay Sigmund is doing with words . . . [for] here in Iowa—not in Europe, lies Grant Wood’s big chance and life’s work,” while Sigmund himself commended Wood as “a new son / Dreaming on the plain.”25 Thus encouraged, Wood painted a portrait of his studio assistant Arnold Pyle, who had turned twenty-one the previous May (pl. 32). Depicting Pyle standing in front of a loosely painted Iowa landscape, surrounded by objects symbolizing his transition to adulthood, Arnold Comes of Age shares with the protagonist in Woman with Plants a poignant melancholy that reveals more about Wood’s inner life than he may have intended. These portraits solidified Wood’s commitment to Iowa subject matter; his next step was to find a style with which to express it more fully. His breakthrough came with his perception that the crisp edges and meticulous description he admired in Early Renaissance painting could convey “a distinct American quality . . . especially suggestive of the middle West civilization.”26 Convinced that hard-edged precision could express “American newness,” Wood adopted the style in his next picture, a depiction of the Wapsipinicon valley hamlet of Stone City, once home to the area’s thriving limestone quarry (pl. 31).27 The landscape backgrounds in Woman with Plants and Arnold Comes of Age had been softly atmospheric and governed by one-point perspective. In Stone City, Wood instead employed shifting focal points and sharply defined areas of flat color patterned with frills and curves suggestive of Currier and Ives prints and willowware china. The profusion of these sinuous, stylized details lent the painting a decidedly decorative quality that reflected Wood’s training in Arts and Crafts. Although he would reduce the florid ornamentation in subsequent work, saying that Stone City had “too damn many pretty curves; too many personal mannerisms,” he retained the painting’s basic vocabulary for the rest of his life.28

Fig. 5. Detail of Map of Linn County, Iowa, 1869. Color engraving, 58 × 66 in. (147.3 × 167.6 cm). Created by D. W. Ensign and Company; published by Thompson and Everts, Geneva, Illinois. Cedar Rapids Museum of Art, Iowa; gift of Harriet Y. and John B. Turner II 76.2.1


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PLATES ___________ ___________


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PLATE 1

Volund Crafts Shop (Grant Wood and Kristoffer Haga) Four Piece Coffee and Tea Set, c. 1914 Coffee pot: silver and ivory, 9 5⁄ 8 × 9 1⁄ 4 × 4 9⁄ 16 in. (24.4 × 23.5 × 11.6 cm); tea pot: silver and ivory, 7 11⁄ 16 × 9 1⁄ 2 × 5 1⁄ 2 in. (19.5 × 24.1 × 14 cm); sugar bowl: silver, 4 1⁄ 16 × 6 3⁄ 16 × 3 13⁄ 16 in. (10.3 × 15.7 × 9.7 cm); creamer: silver, 4 1⁄ 2 × 5 1⁄ 2 × 3 5⁄ 16 in. (11.4 × 14 × 8.4 cm) Minneapolis Institute of Art; gift of funds from Sandra and Peter Butler


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PLATE 15

Adoration of the Home, 1921–22 Oil on canvas mounted on wood, 27 3⁄ 4 × 81 1⁄ 4 in. (70.5 × 206.4 cm) Cedar Rapids Museum of Art, Iowa; gift of Mr. and Mrs. Peter F. Bezanson 80.1


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PLATE 22

Corn Cob Chandelier for Iowa Corn Room, 1925 Copper, iron, and paint, 94 × 32 × 34 in. (238.8 × 81.3 × 86.4 cm) Cedar Rapids Museum of Art, Iowa; gift of John B Turner II 81.17.3


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PLATE 33

American Gothic, 1930 Oil on composition board, 30 3⁄ 4 × 25 3⁄ 4 in. (78 × 65.3 cm) Art Institute of Chicago; Friends of American Art Collection 1930.934


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PLATE 44

The Birthplace of Herbert Hoover, 1931 Oil on composition board, 29 3⁄ 4 × 40 in. (75.2 × 100 cm) Purchased jointly by the Des Moines Art Center and the Minneapolis Institute of Art; with funds from the Edmundson Art Foundation Inc., Mrs. Howard H. Frank, and the John R. Van Derlip Fund 1982.2


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PLATE 97

Study for Parson Weems’ Fable, 1939 Charcoal, pencil, and chalk on paper, 38 3⁄ 8 × 50 in. (97.5 × 127 cm) Private collection


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PLATE 98

Parson Weems’ Fable, 1939 Oil on canvas, 38 3⁄ 8 × 50 1⁄ 8 in. (97.5 × 127.3 cm) Amon Carter Museum of American Art, Fort Worth, Texas 1970.43


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PLATE 67 PLATE 66

Death on the Ridge Road, 1935 Oil on composition board, 39 × 46 1⁄ 16 in. (99 × 117.2 cm) Williams College Museum of Art, Williamstown, Massachusetts; gift of Cole Porter 47.13

The Return from Bohemia, 1935 Pastel, gouache, and pencil on paper, 23 1⁄ 2 × 20 in. (59.7 × 50.8 cm) Promised gift to Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, Bentonville, Arkansas


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Grant Wood: American Gothic and Other Fables  
Grant Wood: American Gothic and Other Fables