The Great Depression Through The Artist 's Eyes

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In 1929, the Western industrialized countries succumbed to a bleak period of time known as the Great Depression. This economic collapse, which persisted for ten long years, was preempted by the stock market crash on Wall Street, buying on credit, supply and demand along with the Dust Bowl of the Great Plains. During this economic state of crisis, the unemployment rate had risen from 3% to 25%, almost 13 million Americans were jobless. Many people could not pay their rent or mortgages. People were evicted into the world of public assistance and forced to wait in long breadlines for free food. Suicide reached an all-time high. “No nation could emerge from the cauldron of national crisis without profound social and cultural change” (Independence Hall Association). Artwork is an expression of a feeling or idea that an artist portrays. It’s an avenue of communicating a moment in time. This paper will analyze four pieces of artwork representing the Great Depression through the artist’s eyes. Artistic styles will be explored along with discussion of trade and exchange as depicted from the artwork. Regionalism is an American realist modern art movement popular during the 1930s. Artists during this art movement shunned the city and the rapidly developing technological advances, dubbed the Age of Progress, to focus on rural life instead (Artinthepicture). The Regionalists view was to paint what was around them, what they know and what they see. During the Great Depression
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