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Exhibitions

Telling Stories: Norman Rockwell from the Collections of George Lucas and Steven Spielberg

July 2, 2010 – January 2, 2011

Read recent articles about the exhibition.


Image for Telling Stories: Norman Rockwell from the Collections of George Lucas and Steven Spielberg

Norman Rockwell, Shadow Artist, 1920, oil on canvas

Two of America's best-known modern filmmakers—George Lucas and Steven Spielberg—recognized a kindred spirit in the artist Norman Rockwell and formed in-depth collections of his work. Lucas, Spielberg and Rockwell have perpetuated American ideals about love of country, personal honor, and the value of family through their work. With humor and pathos, they have transformed ordinary people and the quotidian incidents of everyday experience into stories that show us our better selves and the values that have sustained Americans through good times and bad. All three share an ability to communicate visually with mass audiences using popular media of their time. Telling Stories will reveal for the first time the connections between Rockwell's iconic images of American life and the movies.

This exhibition showcases more than fifty major Rockwell paintings and drawings from these private collections that are rarely seen by the public. Excerpts from interviews in which Lucas and Spielberg talk about Rockwell and the works in their collections will be shown in the exhibition galleries. Telling Stories is organized by Virginia M. Mecklenburg, senior curator.

An illustrated book, published by the Smithsonian American Art Museum, will accompany the exhibition. Written by Mecklenburg with a contribution by Todd McCarthy, film critic for Variety, the publication will be for sale online and in the museum store.

Credit
Telling Stories: Norman Rockwell from the Collections of George Lucas and Steven Spielberg is organized by the Smithsonian American Art Museum. Booz Allen Hamilton has provided generous support as the corporate sponsor of the exhibition. The Museum also gratefully acknowledges the contributions of George Lucas and Steven Spielberg.


Recent Press
The Washington Post, October 1, 2009, "Smithsonian to Feature Rockwell" by Jacqueline Trescott
The New York Times, October 2, 2009, Arts Beat blog post "Spielberg, Lucas Join Forces for New Rockwell Exhibition at Smithsonian" by Dave Itzkoff
The Los Angeles Times, October 2, 2009, Culture Monster blog post "Lucas, Spielberg present: Norman Rockwell as quasi-cinematic auteur" by Mike Boehm
Smithsonian Magazine, October 5, 2009, Around the Mall blog post "Lucas and Spielberg to Show Norman Rockwell Art at Smithsonian in 2010" by Jesse Rhodes


Traveling Map
Luce Center for American Art

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