Folk Art as Modern Art

Marsden Hartley, Georgia O'Keeffe, Charles Sheeler and other early-twentieth-century American artists drew on what they took to be the simplicity of nineteenth-century American folk art to establish a distinctive grammar of modernism. In this talk, Marci Kwon, assistant professor of art history at Stanford University, will explore ways in which American modernists used imagery and styles of representation borrowed from the folk tradition to address urbanization, the changing status of labor, the transformation of gender norms, and other pressing social and cultural concerns.

Sponsored by the Ida and Conrad H. Smith Fund, established by the Raymond C. Smith Foundation Fund of the Community Foundation for Southeast Michigan and the Associates of the American Wing.

Image: Marsden Hartley, Log Jam, Penobscot Bay, 1940-1941, oil on Masonite (TM). Detroit Institute of Arts.