Golden Rule: Do Unto Others. . . in Art & Life (Rockwell)

Cher’s Famous Art

31 May 2020

“Golden Rule”

Norman Rockwell, American, mosaic (1985)

from earlier illustration (1951) and painting (1961)

As I pondered on a famous art work that would be pertinent to the horrendous current events of racism and violence in the Twin Cities, Minnesota, this past week with the death of George Floyd at the hands of the police, this verse and artwork came to mind. If we all applied the Golden Rule to our lives, the world would be a much different place. 

Do unto others as you would have them do unto you” (Matthew 7:12), is considered the 2nd Great Commandment in the Bible and has a comparable maxim in most, if not all, world religions. 

Originally an illustration on the cover of the Saturday Evening Post and then a painting in 1961, it was transformed into a huge 8’, half-ton mosaic for the United Nations headquarters in NYC as a gift from the USA on behalf of the First Lady Nancy Reagan. It represents “people of different nationalities standing together with the words inscribed on the surface and . . . reflects humanity—the wondrous mix of nationalities, creeds and colors.” Rockwell’s models were local exchange students, visitors and local international residents; they represented a great cosmos of nationalities.

The originals can be viewed at Norman Rockwell Museum, Stockbridge, MA.

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