Norman Rockwell: Celebrating America

by Susan Kay Crawford and Mark Hunt




About the authors:

Susan Kay Crawford was at the time of writing this essay Curator of Collections and Mark Hunt was Director at the National Scouting Museum, which was at that time located in Murray, Kentucky.


Resource Library editor's note:

A series of exhibitions titled Celebrating America: The Norman Rockwell Legacy was held at the National Scouting Museum in 1994. This essay was written in conjunction with the exhibitions and was previously published in American Art Review, Volume VI, Number 2, April-May 1994, p. 146-151. Resource Library wishes to extend appreciation to Steven Price of the National Scouting Museum and to Mark Hunt, presently Deputy Director at the Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum, for their assistance in this project.

RL readers may also enjoy these earlier articles:


and these videos:

Norman Rockwell: An American Portrait is a 60 minute 2002 video from V.I.E.W. Video is a PBS special, narrated by 3-time Emmy Award nominee Mason Adams. Norman Rockwell had a love affair with America. His poignant paintings captured the truths of daily life with a simple humane grace and greeted Americans from the cover of The Saturday Evening Post for over five decades. This documentary celebrates Rockwell's life and art, with interviews and commentary by art historians, close friends and the artist himself. "This notable documentary shows Rockwell was a perceptive social commentator of exceptional artistic skill and narrative power" (Entertainment Weekly). DVD: Bonus features include a Norman Rockwell biography, an art gallery and more.



Norman Rockwell. "Norman Rockwell's distinctive illustrations, glowing with the simple, noble character of average citizens, crystallized an image of 20th century American life." This 50 minute 1994 A&E Biography video "provides an intimate portrait of the artist and the man with interviews of friends and people he used as models and takes us on a tour of the Norman Rockwell Museum and his best-known images."






Norman Rockwell: Painting America is an 86 minute 1999 American Masters Production from Winstar Home Entertainment.based on the award-winning PBS series. Norman Rockwell: Painting in America looks at the life and art of one of America's most celebrated illustrators. Best known for his memorable covers of The Saturday Evening Post, Rockwell achieved unprecedented fame for masterfully showing warmth and humor in his renderings of everyday life. This program includes interviews with artists, critics, historians, friends and admirers, as well as archival newsreel and television footage of the artist himself. VHS/DVD.



Norman Rockwell's World: An American Dream is a 24 minute 1972 video directed by Robert Deubel that presents the world of American illustrator Norman Rockwell (1894-1978) through reenactment, stills, paintings, and old film footage. Rockwell himself narrates this Academy Award®-winning film. Using the artwork and the commentary of Rockwell himself in combination with old film footage and staged reenactments, the Saturday Evening Post covers once again come alive.





See images in Rockwell and Csatari: Boy Scout Calendar Artists in the Scouters Pages web site; Scouting By Norman Rockwell [anonymous web site]; scouting-related stamps in Norman Rockwell, by Frederick Oppliger from the Scouts on Stamps Society International web site, and Norman Rockwell Boy Scout Paintings in the Troop 764 web site. Curtis Publishing provides an image of the 1953 Post cover Walking to Church on its web site which the authors compare to the 1968 painting Scouting is Outing.


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