Norman Rockwell (1894 1978): The Young Lady With the

12/27/2021, 2:27:13 PM
Norman Rockwell (1894 1978): The Young Lady With the Shiner, 1953, Oil on canvas, 34 x 32 1/4 inches, Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art, Hartford, Connecticut Norman Rockwell's 'The Young Lady with a Shiner' depicts a young student at school who, having been in a fight, sits on a bench awaiting a lecture and potential punishment from her school's principal. Despite this, the girl in question is ecstatic, and bears a wide smile on her face. Her eye is swollen and bruised, her hair, obviously pulled, is a mess, and her clothing is torn and disheveled. The viewer can instantly tell from the smile that she wouldn't have it any other way, and that she enjoyed the fight immensely. Given her pigtails, untied shoes, and knobby knees and elbows, it seems the student is a girl that revels in living a more masculine lifestyle than that of other girls her age. Model Mary Whalen recalls "The black eye was the hardest thing in that picture, it had to be just perfect." The solution for Rockwell was to copy a genuine black eye, but he was unable to find one locally. The Berkshire Eagle ran a story about his search, and when the national wire picked it up he soon had more offers than he could handle. Taken at first glance, the viewer may take the painting as a celebration of female independence. However, when one looks at the other two characters in the painting, the gendered message becomes more traditional. The student has been brought to the principal's office by her teacher, a well-dressed, beautiful woman who, while telling the bemused principal of what happened, gazes back at the student, with a loving but very concerned look on her face. This is the female role model of the painting, a woman who knows that the young girl, if she maintains this way of life, will end up unhappy in the society of 1950s America. She just hopes that her student will become a proper "lady. 🌟🌟🌟 Best of (Paintings.Painters - 2020) 🌟🌟 🌟 Swipe left to see a short clip from the documentary," Norman Rockwell: Painting America" (1999) (Here, Mary Whalen, model for the painting, tells how Rockwell encouraged her to pose properly)

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