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What We Owe Rockwell, Orwell and the God of Creation

Week 5: Of finding your way back to creativity.

by
Rhonda Robinson

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February 3, 2014 - 10:48 am
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normanRockwell

I met Norman Rockwell in Nashville last week.

Throughout my life, I’ve brushed by his artwork and admired it just like countless other Americans. However, his delightful mixture of realism and caricature are nothing short of captivating on their original massive canvases. I don’t think I could have appreciated him more as a person or as an artist if he were alive and standing in the midst of that exhibit. His lifetime of artwork left behind footprints pooled with deep, reflective waters.

Our trip to the Norman Rockwell Exhibit at the Frist Center started out to be this week’s “Artist Date” as prescribed weekly by Julia Cameron in The Artist’s Way. It turned out to be more than just looking at the work of a master illustrator; it caused me to consider what it means to love your work, and what impact our creativity has on the world around us.

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All Comments   (5)
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Thanks for the memories. During the war, yes WW II, I as a kid and later as a teenager, enjoyed Rockwell. For me he caught a certain naive innocence in the America of my time. We entered into a "good" war, solidarity, common effort, hopes for peace eternal (an illusion), yet not a "rich", arutocratic, and dominating nation (the Brits were not the Rockwell subject matter), rather one still mired internally in itself as the pioneer days were just passsing (my grandparents were pioneers), the down trodden of Europe, all came, worked and it seemed to work. I think that Rockwell caught that naive self-reliance and self-belief, played with it, had fun with it and showed ourselves to ourselves with a chuckle. Europeans, with their long history, do not have that sense of "birth" and the common guy (if he is there he is the proletariat and part of an ideology). Rockwell's presents an intact world. I no longer view America of today as intact, rather as a land mired in a cultural war for its very soul. So a certain sorrow accompanies my memories. Thanks for reminding me of times gone by.
10 weeks ago
10 weeks ago Link To Comment
He did what he was made to do, is there a greater personal gift?
10 weeks ago
10 weeks ago Link To Comment
No Katherine I don't believe there is. I know, for myself, I left my first love of art as a teen. How tragic it is that so many of us never fulfill what we were made to do. Instead, try to fit into the mold someone else has fashioned for us.

10 weeks ago
10 weeks ago Link To Comment
My wife and I went to see it as well (we're "local" here in Nashville). It was fascinating, and your observations are on target. I love the contrast with Orwell.
10 weeks ago
10 weeks ago Link To Comment
It might be said the political correctness is purposefully ignoring the obvious in pursuit of an agenda. After some years of that, people have seemed to come to a place where they actually believe the obvious doesn't exist and the unseen does. An example is, don't say anything bad about the Third World that profiles it, even if it's generally true. But profile it positively, though there is so sign of those traits.
10 weeks ago
10 weeks ago Link To Comment
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