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Freedom from Want by Norman Rockwell

Freedom from Want by Norman Rockwell    

Norman Rockwell Signature


March 6, 1943 Issue of The Saturday Evening Post:
The Four Freedoms Series


Norman Rockwell's Freedom from Want appeared on the pages of The Saturday Evening Post on March 6, 1943.

This was the third installment of Rockwell's famous Four Freedoms series.

The painting was also originally reproduced on a poster promoting the sale of war bonds during World War Two.

This painting is also known as Thanksgiving Dinner. Many people consider this the definitive Norman Rockwell Thanksgiving painting.

Freedom from Want has also been reproduced in several Rockwell Books: page 123 of The Norman Rockwell Album, illustration 406 of Norman Rockwell's America by Christopher Finch, page 147 of Norman Rockwell: Illustrator by Arthur L. Guptill, page 87 of Norman Rockwell: A Sixty Year Retrospective by Thomas Buechner, page 33 of Norman Rockwell, Storyteller With A Brush, and page 770 and Plate 62 of Norman Rockwell, A Definitive Catalogue by Laurie Norton Moffatt.

The illustration also appears in The Norman Rockwell Poster Book and 50 Norman Rockwell Favorites.

This painting also appears on page 49 of A Treasury of the Saturday Evening Post. A Treasury of the Saturday Evening Post also reproduces the original Post article by Carlos Bulosan that was published with the illustration.

The original oil on canvas painting, 45.75 x 35.5 inches or 116 x 90 cm, is housed in the Norman Rockwell Museum of Stockbridge, Mass.




Norman Rockwell's Four Freedoms Paintings



Available as Oil on Canvas:
Oil on Canvas Reproduction

The Four Freedoms paintings were inspired by a speech given before the United States Congress on January 6, 1941 by President Franklin Delano Roosevelt. In that famous and stirring speech, Roosevelt enumerated four basic freedoms to which every person was entitled.

The first was freedom of speech. Second was freedom to worship. Third was freedom from want. Fourth was freedom from fear.

The images and articles were presented in The Saturday Evening Post in the same order as President Roosevelt presented them in his speech.

Norman Rockwell's Freedom from Want:
The Thanksgiving Feast

Giclee Prints on Archival Paper:
At Art.com


Available as Oil on Canvas:
Oil on Canvas Reproduction

Freedom from Want is one of Norman Rockwell's best loved and most recognized compositions.

Rockwell fussed over this cover a long time before he completed it. He was very concerned that it would convey overabundance instead of freedom from want.

Mrs. Thaddeus Wheaton, the Rockwell family cook, was actually the model for the grandmother serving the turkey. Rockwell was known for using friends and family in his paintings.

I painted the turkey in Freedom From Want on Thanksgiving Day. Mrs. Wheaton, our cook, cooked it, I painted it and we ate it.     -Norman Rockwell

Examining this painting, we see a large family gathered around their table for a feast. We presume the occaison is Thanksgiving because of the huge turkey being served. Both the good china and the good silver are on the table.

Children and grandchildren, conversing happily with each other, populate the holiday table on both sides. Grandpa is at the head of the table and has his carving tools ready to slice and serve the mouth-watering bird.

Grandma is placing the turkey in its place. She is still wearing her apron, lest some succulent juices spill and ruin her dress. The turkey appears to be cooked to perfection.

The table extends past the bottom of the canvas, giving the perception that the viewer is actually at the table. The gentleman in the lower right corner of the painting seems to be inviting us to join in the feast.

Norman Rockwell's painting, in addition to invoking emotions associated with family, also induces hunger. It may be time for a sandwich. A turkey sandwich.

This picture was also printed on Office of War Information poster OWI Poster Number 45 O-511886.

The captions on the original war poster read as follows: "OURS... to fight for " above and "FREEDOM FROM WANT" underneath the illustration.


The March 6, 1943 Saturday Evening Post illustration by Norman Rockwell entitled Freedom from Want

Buy it now at Art.com

Norman Rockwell's Freedom from Want (1943)
(Image Only) Copyright © 1943 Saturday Evening Post & Curtis Publishing Company



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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.

More at BrainyQuote.

Rockwell Favorites

Doctor and the Doll
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Santa at His Desk
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Santa at His Desk
Before the Shot
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Before the Shot
Game Called Because of Rain
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Game Called Because of Rain (Three Umpires)
Freedom of Speech
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Freedom of Speech
Freedom from Want
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Freedom from Want
No Swimming
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No Swimming
The Runaway
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The Runaway
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Girl at the Mirror
Tattoo Artist
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Tattoo Artist
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Puppy Love
(Little Spooners)

Norman Rockwell Christmas and Norman Rockwell Thanksgiving Galleries are open.

Norman Rockwell's painting, A Drum for Tommy or Santa with Drum, appeared on the cover of The Country Gentleman on 12/17/1921
Norman Rockwell Santa Claus
Gallery is open!







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