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1924 Norman Rockwell Born: New York, New York 1894 Died: Stockbridge, Massachusetts 1978 oil on canvas 22 3/4 x 18 5/8 in. (57.8 x 47.4 cm.) Smithsonian American Art Museum Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Bernard M. Hollander 1997.113 Smithsonian American Art Museum
Luce Foundation Center, 4th Floor, 36B

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"Maybe as I grew up and found that the world wasn't the perfectly pleasant place I had thought it to be I unconsciously decided that, even if it wasn't an ideal world, it should be and so painted only the ideal aspects of it." Rockwell, My Adventures as an Illustrator, 1960

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Norman Rockwell's Homecoming was published on the cover of the Saturday Evening Post on September 24, 1924. He painted sentimental images of everyday life that people all over the country could enjoy. This illustration, of a working man returning from the Grand Hotel in New York, suggests that home and family are more important than success---or failure---in the big city. The man's battered suitcase and disheveled clothes imply a rough and disappointing life, but his expression shows that the only thing he cares about at this moment is his dog. In this way, Rockwell emphasized his simple, nostalgic view of "life as I would like it to be" (Rockwell, My Adventures as an Illustrator, 1960).


Animal - dog

Dress - accessory - hat

Dress - accessory - umbrella

Figure male - elderly - full length

Object - other - luggage


paint - oil

fabric - canvas