In Search of Norman Rockwell’s America

by June 8, 2009 • 0 comments

Amid threat of closure, the Visual Arts Center of Panama City is moving forward with the exhibit In Search of Norman Rockwell’s America.  I love Rockwell as I have a nostalgic affinity of the 40’s and 50’s.  Of course, during that time period, having only been a glimmer in my parent’s eye, I only have to go off the depictions found in books and the movies.  But, I hear it was a great time, a time when the American Dream, was The American Dream.

I apologize up front for the mushy-ness, but this is what Norman Rockwell does to me.

Today, it seems like we get so lost in computers, technology, social marketing, staying connected through our iPhones and BlackBerries that we don’t seem to find time to play catch with our kids, ride our bikes as far as we can ride them (and then go back), or just go for a cruise with our family to the soda joint.  It seems like we are so caught up in what everyone else is doing that we don’t bother to ask how our wives and kids are.

I gripe at this lifestyle every time I pack up the car for a family road trip.  I ache for those stops with huge plaster dinosaur statues or mountains with faces blown into the side.  I remember the good ‘ol days, white picket fences, homes with huge wrap-around porches and time spent outside, talking with the neighbors, who were your best friends.  I dream one day of traveling the open road, and seeing America in all its glory with my family in an RV.  Shoot, I dream of a day when I can spend more time with my family.

In Search of Norman Rockwell’s America is an exhibit, inspired by Kevin Rivoli’s book that shows through photographs that Norman Rockwell’s America is, indeed, present today.  The exhibit will have over 35 original Normal Rockwell paintings alongside similarly evocative black and white photographs, taken by Rivoli.  Many of the original Rockwell paintings have never been loaned out from their owners.

This Friday evening, the Opening Gala will be held at the Visual Arts Center this Friday, the 12th at 7 pm.  There will be “dinner, dancing, and cocktails.”

Visit the Visual Arts Center’s web site for more information.

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