Grant Wood – American Gothic (1930)
Grandma Moses – Hoosick River, Summer (1952)
During this GalleryTime presentation we explore two works of art that not only show elements of the American
scene, but serve to depict something of the American character as well.
Grant Wood's American Gothic is a national icon, if we may say that about a painting! It is an image as nearly
recognizable as the Mona Lisa, and one that has been borrowed almost as often for an infinite variety of purposes -
from selling corn flakes and computers to satirizing political figures. It so captures the popular notion of sturdy
independence and belief in the work ethic - credited with helping to build this nation - that it says "American" to
many of us.
Grandma Moses was herself a "national icon". It was not only her painting that captured the heart of America when
she was "discovered" in 1938, but her Yankee directness and spirited approach to life as well, even at an advanced
age, that stamped her as an American original. Her vibrant, animated scenes, like Hoosick River, Summer depict
life in rural America as she remembered it from her youth, and they give us a feeling of "home" no matter what our
In painting the life they knew and loved best, each artist created what are American works in the truest sense --
homegrown products of the American experience. In this session of GalleryTime, we create visions of our own
“American experience” too.
Hoosick River, Summer