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Alexandre Hogue
Dust Bowl
24 x 33 in.
Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of International Business Machines Corporation

In Dust Bowl, Oklahoma artist Alexandre Hogue shows the desolation that caused thousands of Midwestern families to abandon their farms in the 1930s. Several years of drought, combined with overgrazing and poor farming practices, had parched the earth throughout the Great Plains states. When unusually strong windstorms hit the area in the early 1930s, millions of tons of topsoil were blown away, and choking clouds of dust darkened the skies.