Tuesday, January 5, 2010

blame it on uncle norman...

Spent this past new year's weekend caught up in a blizzard up in Stockbridge, Mass. One of my favorite places on earth, home of the incredible Norman Rockwell Museum.

Of course, when in Stockbridge, you HAVE TO stay at the Red Lion Inn, the loveliest, spookiest, charmingist Inn in America. Sit by the fireplace in the lobby and enjoy a hot cider, friend.

Also ate at Theresa's, possibly the most famous unknown restaurant in the world. huh? Well, ok, it used to be called 'Alice's Restaurant.' Yes, THE Alice's Restaurant. And yes, it IS 'just a half a mile from the railroad track.'

The Rockwell Museum was running a show featuring a lot of Norman's photo reference, to coincide with the recent publication of the wonderful book "Norman Rockwell: Behind the Camera" written by Ron Schick (go buy it, now!).

What's YOUR favorite Rockwell? (IMPOSSIBLE question, right?) I'm partial to "Freedom From Fear"...

but also this one from 'Tom Sawyer' is a fave...

...and this one too!...

and one more...

how about you???


  1. I've had a large reproduction of the Dolores and Eddie Gaiety Dance Team in my home since my wife and I got married 8 years ago, it's become a favorite. However, seeing Rosie the Riveter in person a few years ago in D.C. was an experience that was so amazing it almost made me ill. She was larger than life-size!

    This past weekend I was fortunate to see the amazing American illustration collection of Richard Kelly. It was mind-blowing! I have a new respect for some old favorites like Dean Cornwell and Mead Schaeffer. I felt very very small looking at the mastery of J.C. Leyendecker from an inch away. I was also introduced to some artists I hadn't heard of like E.F. Ward and the talented women of the Red Rose Inn. Babble, babble, sorry, I'm still hungover from the amount of amazing work I saw on Sunday!

  2. Rosie the Riveter is just stunning, stunning, stunning! I saw it years ago and have never forgotten the experience.

    How on earth did you get to see Richard Kelly's collection, you lucky dog? I'd cut off a toe to see a few more Leyendeckers again before I die!

  3. I went to the museum about 5 years ago with a friend, did the whole thing, stayed at the Red Lion (which I found accidentally two years before I knew about the Rockwell connection). Suffice it to say, Rockwell is one of my all time favorite artist. I saw the touring collection first at the Guggenheim and fell in love with the originals.

  4. The print shop I work for did some work for Warren Bernard of the Small Press Expo. Warren is a close friend of the Kellys and he conducts tours from time to time and we were lucky to be invited this year! Maybe the stars will align some time and I can drag you along!

  5. I'd say Freedom to worship for the textures, and possibly the forging contest...whew...that wasn't easy. Thanks for sharing your art and musings. It was your introducing me to lyendecker and some thoughtful and honest critism, at a portfolio review years ago, that spurred alot of artistic growth! Thanks, and keep inspiring sir!


  6. Kelly,
    'The Forging Contest" is on display at the museum, along with some of his reference photos for it. It's like 80 times more impressive in real life than in print!
    Yeah, don't get me started on Leyendecker!

    oh, and thanks for the kind words, pal!

  7. My favorite is (what I believe is called) Freedom of Speech. The Abe Lincoln looking guy one.