No celebration of New Rochelle history would be complete without a look back at Norman Rockwell and his quirky and iconic images of Americana.
The nationally-known artist spent some of his most productive years in New Rochelle, before moving to Vermont in 1939.
So as the city begins its 325th anniversary celebrations, the New Rochelle Public Library will remember Rockwell with a display of some of the many magazine covers he created, particularly for the Saturday Evening Post, from Jan. 9 through 30.
Many New Rochelle residents posed for Rockwell’s illustrations, standing in as representatives of typical American small-town life.
City historian Barbara Davis will relate their stories and Rockwell’s own depictions of New Rochelle in a free reception and talk from 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m., Jan. 13.
A second exhibit, “Norman Rockwell’s New Rochelle Years,” will accompany the magazine illustrations. Visitors can view the exhibits during the library’s regular hours.
The photo above shows a 1926 illustration Rockwell created for the booklet New Rochelle, the City of the Huguenots.
Here is the library’s press release on the events:
NEW ROCHELLE PUBLIC LIBRARY TO PRESENT EXHIBIT:
NORMAN ROCKWELL’S AMERICA: NEW ROCHELLE & BEYOND
The images of America’s most popular illustrator, Norman Rockwell, have been reproduced more than those of any other artist. His perfectly detailed portrayals of Americana illustrated 322 Saturday Evening Post covers, 49 Boy Scout calendars and dozens of other periodicals, children’s books and advertisements. He was the master illustrator of life in America. For the first 25 years of his formidable career, his America was New Rochelle, where he lived and worked.
In conjunction with the 325th Anniversary of New Rochelle, the New Rochelle Public Library is pleased to open the year with an exhibit of magazine covers illustrated by Norman Rockwell while he lived in New Rochelle, as well as a few of his iconic images from later years. The covers are on loan from Jennifer Faulkner, a native New Rochellean who has been collecting Rockwell’s magazine illustrations for over 20 years. Many of the covers he illustrated in New Rochelle, primarily Saturday Evening Post magazines from 1917 – 1940, feature New Rochelle residents who posed for the nationally-acclaimed artist. Their stories, and Rockwell’s personal accounts of New Rochelle, will be related during a free Public Reception and Gallery Talk by city historian Barbara Davis, on Sunday, January 13th, from 5:30 – 7:00 pm.
An additional exhibit, Norman Rockwell’s New Rochelle Years, will also be on display. Originally curated by Theresa Kump Leghorn and Barbara Davis for the Museum of Arts and Culture at New Rochelle High School, this exhibit includes images, anecdotes and a chronology of Rockwell’s first 25 years as an artist and illustrator.
The exhibits will be on display from January 9- January 30 during the library’s regular operating hours: Monday, Tuesday and Thursday, 9:00 am – 8:00 pm; Wednesday, 10:00 am – 6:00 pm; Friday and Saturday, 9:00 – 5:00 pm; and Sunday 1:00 – 5:00 pm.