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Norman Rockwell once said he envied students who swooned when viewing the Mona Lisa because he never felt such passion. Rockwell may have seen himself as a more analytical artist, such as the one examining a seventeenth-century Dutch painting in his 1955 Art Critic. His original draft depicts a student studying painter Frans Hals' technique in a portrait of a Dutch housewife. In that study, a Dutch landscape on an adjacent wall places the student in a gallery of Dutch artwork. But a recurring Rockwell theme - of reality and fantasy exchanging placesm - seems to have taken over and the painting changed course.

 

With typical humor, Rockwell replaces the homely woman with one more alluring - based on a Peter Paul Rubens' portrait of his wife. The Dutch landscape became a group of Dutch cavaliers, brought to life by animated facial expressions. They are wary and concerned. Is the student getting too close to the painting? Is he being too personal with their gallery colleague? The scene's movement from reality to fantasy refutes the view that Rockwell's work is only photographic.

Norman Rockwel - Blacksmith's Boy – Heel And Toe

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Norman Rockwel - Blacksmith's Boy – Heel And Toe Art Print
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Norman Rockwel - Blacksmith's Boy – Heel And Toe Art Print
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Norman Rockwel - Blacksmith's Boy – Heel And Toe Art Print
Rolled • 24x12 inches

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Norman Rockwel - Blacksmith's Boy – Heel And Toe Canvas Print
Rolled • 12x6 inches

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Norman Rockwel - Blacksmith's Boy – Heel And Toe Canvas Print
Rolled • 18x9 inches

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BEST SELLER
Medium Size

Medium Size

Norman Rockwel - Blacksmith's Boy – Heel And Toe Canvas Print
Rolled • 24x12 inches

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Small Size

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Norman Rockwel - Blacksmith's Boy – Heel And Toe Canvas Framed Print
Framed • 12x6 inches

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Norman Rockwel - Blacksmith's Boy – Heel And Toe Canvas Print
Wrapped • 12x6 inches

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Compact Size

Compact Size

Norman Rockwel - Blacksmith's Boy – Heel And Toe Canvas Print
Wrapped • 18x9 inches

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Compact Size

Compact Size

Norman Rockwel - Blacksmith's Boy – Heel And Toe Canvas Framed Print
Framed • 18x9 inches

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BEST SELLER
Medium Size

Medium Size

Norman Rockwel - Blacksmith's Boy – Heel And Toe Canvas Print
Wrapped • 24x12 inches

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BEST SELLER
Medium Size

Medium Size

Norman Rockwel - Blacksmith's Boy – Heel And Toe Canvas Framed Print
Framed • 24x12 inches

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Small Size

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Norman Rockwel - Blacksmith's Boy – Heel And Toe Framed Print
Framed with Mat • 12x6 inches

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Compact Size

Compact Size

Norman Rockwel - Blacksmith's Boy – Heel And Toe Framed Print
Framed with Mat • 18x9 inches

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Medium Size

Medium Size

Norman Rockwel - Blacksmith's Boy – Heel And Toe Framed Print
Framed with Mat • 24x12 inches

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Norman Rockwell once said he envied students who swooned when viewing the Mona Lisa because he never felt such passion. Rockwell may have seen himself as a more analytical artist, such as the one examining a seventeenth-century Dutch painting in his 1955 Art Critic. His original draft depicts a student studying painter Frans Hals' technique in a portrait of a Dutch housewife. In that study, a Dutch landscape on an adjacent wall places the student in a gallery of Dutch artwork. But a recurring Rockwell theme - of reality and fantasy exchanging placesm - seems to have taken over and the painting changed course.   With typical humor, Rockwell replaces the homely woman with one more alluring - based on a Peter Paul Rubens' portrait of his wife. The Dutch landscape became a group of Dutch cavaliers, brought to life by animated facial expressions. They are wary and concerned. Is the student getting too close to the painting? Is he being too personal with their gallery colleague? The scene's movement from reality to fantasy refutes the view that Rockwell's work is only photographic.

A young talent, Norman Rockwell received his first commission at age 17.  By 1916, a 22-year-old Rockwell had painted his first cover for The Saturday Evening Post—the beginning of a 47-year and 321-cover relationship with the most prestigious magazine of the era. Rockwell's success stemmed to a large degree from his careful appreciation for everyday American scenes, the warmth of small-town life in particular. Often what he depicted was treated with a certain simple charm and sense of humour. He created World War II posters and received the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1977.

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