The American Scene

  • J. Fred Woell, The American Scene, 1988, silver and Civil War bullet shell fragment of copper-clad steel, Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of Eleanor T. and Samuel J. Rosenfeld, 1991.114, © 1989, J. Fred Woell

Luce Center Label

In The American Scene, Fred Woell plays on ideas of the sacred and the secular, contrasting a portrait of Colonel Sanders with a coin portrait of Abraham Lincoln and a fragment of a Civil War bullet. The phrase "Our Lady of the Highway Pray for Us" evokes the restlessness of the American people. Although the different parts of this work initially appear to be unconnected, Woell chose his icons carefully. After all, Lincoln is revered as a leader and healer of our nation and Kentucky was his birth state, long before "Colonel Sanders."

Luce Object Quote
"My work is about striving and survival. The pieces and parts I fuse into the assemblages add up to stories about what we live by and what we disregard in our wake towards achieving pleasure and fulfilling goals." J. Fred Woell
Title
The American Scene
Artist
Date
1988
Location
Not on view
Dimensions
1 3/8 x 1 7/8 x 1/2 in. (4.1 x 4.7 x 1.3 cm.)
Credit Line

Smithsonian American Art Museum

Gift of Eleanor T. and Samuel J. Rosenfeld

Mediums
Mediums Description
silver and Civil War bullet shell fragment of copper-clad steel
Classifications
Keywords
  • Occupation – military – soldier
  • Figure group
Object Number
1991.114
Palette
Linked Open Data
Linked Open Data URI

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