In Search of Rockwell’s America at The John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art

From Feb 13th through Apr 25th, 2010.

Revisit America through the nostalgic paintings of Norman Rockwell and the poignant, photographs of Kevin Rivoli at In Search of Norman Rockwell’s America, a pioneering exhibition that pairs the work of both artists. The exhibition features thirty-five of Rivoli’s black an white photographs alongside original paintings, drawings, and limited artist’s prints by Rockwell.

Often criticized for creating moments that did not exist, Rockwell never waivered from his passion for, as he put it: “showing the America I knew and observed to others who might not have noticed.” Rockwell’s works have become icons of America.

Nearly twenty years ago Rivoli began taking “slice of life” photographs documenting candid and intimate moments in the lives of ordinary Americans. Much like Rockwell, Rivoli gravitated towards scenes of everyday, commonplace life in America which capture the spirit of family, community, patriotism, historic events and people enjoying pastimes. Rivoli’s photographs are in many ways modern-day versions of Rockwell’s approachable, nostalgic and comforting paintings similar to Rockwell’s work, not only in mood and subject, but often in composition as well. Rivoli’s work helps demonstrate that the America Rockwell painted is still alive and well.

In Search of Norman Rockwell’s America introduces Norman Rockwell’s work to a new generation while providing an opportunity for his existing fans to reconnect with this American icon. By pairing Rockwell’s celebrated, familiar images to Rivoli’s contemporary photographs, the exhibition encourages us to look for those moments of happiness, pride, mischief, courage, and patriotism that exist every day, not just in Rockwell paintings.

A book, published by Howard Books, an imprint of Simon and Schuster, features a significantly larger selection of Rivoli’s photographs juxtaposed with Rockwell images. The book is available for purchase in the Ringling Museum Store.

The John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art
5401 Bay Shore Road
Sarasota, FL 34243

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