Village Green

Media - 1989.86 - SAAM-1989.86_1 - 10824
Copied John Pike, Village Green, 1945, oil on fiberboard, 24 1830 18 in. (61.476.6 cm.), Smithsonian American Art Museum, Bequest of Henry Ward Ranger through the National Academy of Design, 1989.86

Artwork Details

Village Green
24 1830 18 in. (61.476.6 cm.)
lower right in oil: JOHN/PIKE frame verso upper runner center in pencil: Purchased Ranger Fund top stretcher left in pencil: S (written in a circle) 10448 top stretcher center in pencil: John Pike Village Green U.S.A stretcher left runner center in pencil: 665-A (written sideways) frame verso lower right in pencil: FRAME BELONGS/to Camito" (written upside-down)
Credit Line
Bequest of Henry Ward Ranger through the National Academy of Design
Mediums Description
oil on fiberboard
  • Landscape
  • Figure(s) in exterior
  • Architecture — vehicle — automobile
  • Animal — horse
  • Landscape — bird’s eye view
  • Landscape — town
  • Architecture — vehicle — carriage
Object Number

Artwork Description

Village Green shows a congested square where cars, bicycles, and horse-drawn carriages compete for space on the narrow roads. The image suggests the effects of war on the home front: a soldier in the foreground greets an elderly neighbor, a group of children play “war” in the square, a sign advertises a Red Cross blood drive, and an honor roll lists the names of local boys serving overseas. John Pike painted this image in 1945, when World War II was ending and he was posted to Asia as an artist-correspondent. The thin layers of paint, scumbled colors, and bird’s-eye view create a hazy, sentimental image that evokes a distant memory, as if recalled by someone far from home.