Thursday, December 13, 2012

St. Louis Central Library Reopening: 20th Century Art

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Almost all of the 20th Century art I saw in the library was from the 1930s. That's a strong suggestion that the works were part of the many federally-financed arts projects during the Great Depression.

The first two images are from a painting called Adult Education. That was one of the main reasons for libraries according to the spirit of the day. If I remember correctly the painting was dated 1936.

The third image is a mosaic on a fireplace in the children's room. It's a little difficult to decipher. My guess is that it shows a Native American man building and/or using a fire. I had to zoom way in on the original to see small inscriptions on the bottom of each of the three main panels. The best I can tell is that the first two contain the letters DS and the third the number 38, probably referring to 1938.

The last is a painting of the Mississippi River, seen from a wooded hilltop. It's called Rival of the Rhine. Wrong. I've seen the Rhine and it is nowhere near as magnificent as the Mississippi.     

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St. Louis Central Library Reopening 18

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Olivier said...

de belles photos des oeuvres, et c'est pas facile de faire de telles photos dans les musées. En France on interdit de plus en plus la photographie d'oeuvres dans les musées ;(

cieldequimper said...

Interesting set of works.

Virginia said...

Thank goodness Mr. Kindle hasn't put the libraries out of business....yet!

William Kendall said...

I quite like those!

Jude said...

As a librarian, I am overwhelmed by how pretentious this particular library seems. But then again, maybe all libraries are pretentious.

Jack said...

Yes, it really does look like 1930s art. The government paid a lot of artists in that decade, to keep them alive and fed.