John Heaton (jheaton) wrote,
John Heaton
jheaton

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Artistic Advent: St. Joseph Carving

St. Joseph Carving
c. 1938
Rendered by Stanley Mazur
watercolor, graphite, and colored pencil on paperboard
St. Joseph Carving
National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.

When I selected this work for my Advent project, I assumed it was a sculpture. I blame the title, and also that it looks like a sculpture. But when I looked at the media I got to wondering: a sculpture made of colored paperboard? That didn't seem right somehow. I finally determined that, as René Magritte might have said, ceci n'est pas une sculpture. It is, in fact, a drawing of a sculpture, one of a series of renderings by Stanley Mazur for the Index of American Design, a Works Projects Administration program that employed hundreds of artists to document thousands of works of American decorative art during the Great Depression. Let's hear it for the New Deal!

I'm feeling better today than I did yesterday, though I've still got a fever and my stomach is still a little queasy. But I think I'll survive. Thanks for your good wishes.
Tags: advent: 2004, art: illustration
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