Art for Thanksgiving: Freedom from Want (Rockwell)

Cher’s Famous Art

November 26, 2020; November 25, 2021

November 24, 2022

“Freedom from Want”

Norman Rockwell, 1941, American Illustrator

You would be disappointed if I did not include this iconic Thanksgiving feast by Norman Rockwell!  The setting is something for us to continue to reflect on these past two years as we have been forced to define for ourselves: wants vs. needs.  

This multi-generational, cozy meal was especially significant to us in 2020, during a worldwide pandemic, as we were forced to social distance and limit the size of our holiday gatherings in many states, including my home state of Minnesota where gatherings were forbidden outside of one’s own household–and social distancing of at least 6 feet was required.  It can argued that we have – or have not – moved beyond the drama of 2020. Nevertheless, we all continue to long to replicate this close family dinner into which Rockwell gives us an inviting snapshot. I can almost smell the turkey!

As the entire world continues to live under the threat of a different enemy, a deadly virus, let us be encouraged and inspired by the Four Freedoms with which we as Americans have been blessed. 

“Freedom from Want” by Norman Rockwell, 1943, American

Freedom from Want” is part of Rockwell’s “Four Freedoms Series” inspired by a 1941 FDR speech of the same name.  With the entire world living under threat of Nazi domination, President Roosevelt gave his speech naming four basic freedoms Americans should strive for: freedom of speech, freedom to worship God as we see fit, freedom from want, and freedom from fear.  Rockwell’s genius enabled him to translate these abstract American ideals into scenes from everyday life, making them seem both real and attainable. 

For more information on the other paintings in the Four Freedoms Series, click on my link to the Freedom From Fear.

Happy Thanksgiving! Be SAFE.


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