The Idle American

Edgar's picture

‘Tis a puzzlement. Can anyone on the planet engage us to the degree that a 20th century icon did?

More specifically, can anyone “grab” us visually the way he did--that prolific author, painter and illustrator who reached Americans’innermost cockles with a paint brush and canvas?

That icon re-defined sentimentality with engaging covers on The Saturday Evening Post 321 times during the publication’s 66 years of weekly magazines. His name was Norman Rockwell. Some well-known critics refused to take his works seriously, even failing to call him an artist. Rockwell agreed, but still turned out more than 4,000 original works, capturing the hearts of a grateful nation, up to and including U.S. presidents….

“Have you seen Rockwell’s Post cover this week?” was a question heard often from border to border and from shore to shore. His covers sparked convivial conversation across backyard fences, in barber and beauty shops and thousands of other places across the land.

He painted happiness--claiming that his own delight came from putting paint to canvas--producing works that tugged on the heartstrings of us all. Yep, warm “fuzzies” were his specialty. I doubt if there’ll ever be another person who will match his artistic touch.


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