- Miss America Beauty Pageant
- Not on view
- 48 x 40 in. (121.9 x 101.6 cm.)
- Credit Line
- Gift of Herbert Waide Hemphill, Jr.
- Mediums Description
- oil on masonite
- Figure group
- Ceremony — other — beauty contest
- Object Number
Malcah Zeldis spent several years living on a kibbutz in Israel and gave herself the Hebrew name Malcah, which means "queen," when she was nineteen. After she returned to the United States, she began to paint satires of American rituals, including national holidays, funerals, and splashy weddings. Zeldis points up the contrast between the golden blondes who dominate this painting and the dark-haired, dark-skinned people around them. The meaning is unclear, but the image suggests that the artist was coming to terms with a culture very different from what she had known in Israel.