America Today, Thomas Hart Benton
Painter Thomas Hart Benton was known as a Regionalist, painting day to day life of the United States. He considered himself an enemy of modernism, and did not edit his painting of “everyday American life”- which included paintings of Ku Klux Klan members- without disdain nor empathy.
The mural here, “America Today,” was heavily influenced by El Greco (whom I love, the color palette is evident of this). A panoramic interpretation of America during the Jazz Age of the 1920s, the popularization of this mural helped sparked the mural program of the Works Project Administration. His murals and teaching career at the National Arts League heavily inspired such artists as Diego Rivera, Dennis Hopper and Jackson Pollock.
Who: Thomas Hart Benton
What: America Today
Where: 1290 Avenue of the Americas, lobby