The Decorator by Norman Rockwell
March 30, 1940 Issue of The Saturday Evening Post
The Decorator, a Norman Rockwell painting, appeared on the cover of The Saturday Evening Post published March 30, 1940. This is another favorite of Rockwell collectors, a classic enduring image of the world Rockwell painted.
An alternate title for this painting is Woman With Fabric Samples And Chair.
This painting was Rockwell's 192nd overall out of 322 total paintings that were published on the cover of the Saturday Evening Post. Rockwell's career with the Post spanned 47 years, from his first cover illustration, Boy With Baby Carriage in 1916 to his last, Portrait of John F. Kennedy, in 1963.
This was also the first cover for The Post in 1940. In 1940, there were seven Norman Rockwell Saturday Evening Post covers published.
The original oil on canvas painting, 36 x 30 inches or 91.5 x 76 cm, is part of a private collection.
This painting also appears in four Rockwell commentary books. It appears:
Pristine original copies of this magazine cover routinely sell for big bucks on eBay, when it is offered. And to think it only cost five cents originally! And it was mint condition then, too.
In this painting, Norman Rockwell shows us a potential conflict betwen husband and wife.
The husband is sitting in his old comfortable chair. He is enjoying his pipe and reading his newpaper.
His wife, the "decorator," is seeing how she can spruce up the room. One of her options is changing the upholstery on her husband's chair.
Notice the look of concern on his face. His favorite place in the world, his haven, is being threatened with sprucing up.
The fabrics the wife is considering do not look like what this fellow considers manly.
The Decorator was only one of 322 Norman Rockwell Saturday Evening Post covers; Here is the list of Norman Rockwell Saturday Evening Post cover illustrations.
Here is the complete list of all Norman Rockwell magazine covers.
The woman seems determined to carry through with her decoration on their living space.
Maybe they can reach a compromise. Maybe the man can just buy a new chair for the space and move his old favorite to another room.
Norman Rockwell's The Decorator (1940)
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Do you have a personal story about this painting? Do you know the model personally? Do you have a different take on the commentary?
Norman Rockwell Quotes:
I'll never have enough time to paint all the pictures I'd like to.
No man with a conscience can just bat out illustrations. He's got to put all his talent and feeling into them!
Some people have been kind enough to call me a fine artist. I've always called myself an illustrator. I'm not sure what the difference is. All I know is that whatever type of work I do, I try to give it my very best. Art has been my life.
Right from the beginning, I always strived to capture everything I saw as completely as possible.
The secret to so many artists living so long is that every painting is a new adventure. So, you see, they're always looking ahead to something new and exciting. The secret is not to look back.
I can take a lot of pats on the back. I love it when I get admiring letters from people. And, of course, I'd love it if the critics would notice me, too.
You must first spend some time getting your model to relax. Then you'll get a natural expression.
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