Sep 18, 2006
Apr 12, 2010

A Paramount Picture

A Paramount Picture

1934

Reginald Marsh

(American, 1898–1954)

Tempera on Masonite

Framed: 107.3 x 86.4 x 4.5 cm (42 1/4 x 34 x 1 3/4 in.); Unframed: 90.8 x 70.5 cm (35 3/4 x 27 3/4 in.)

Leonard C. Hanna, Jr. Fund 2006.137

Did you know?

Marsh kept meticulous records, indicating that he created this painting between September 5-24, 1934.

Description

Contrasting the real lives of everyday people with the reel lives of movie stars, this painting portrays a working-class woman standing by a Times Square theater in front of a large poster advertising Cecil B. DeMille’s blockbuster movie Cleopatra, starring Claudette Colbert in the title role. Enormously popular, such film spectacles offered escapist glamour, romance, and power amid the challenges of the Great Depression. Yet, despite the distraction of the city and its entertainments, the woman remains weary and essentially alone in the crowd.

Video

What is Happening in This Painting?
Always Had His Sketchbook
Claudette Colbert
The Story of the Frame
See also

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