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Prints for the People: Associated American Artists

Through May 5, 2024

Grant Wood (1892-1942), March (detail), 1939, lithograph on deckled white wove paper, 12 1/2 x 15 3/4 inches (sheet), Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Robert Rothschild, 1978.67.1

Exhibition Dates

Through May 5, 2024

Buy Tickets Exhibitions are free with admission.

Prints for the People: Associated American Artists

January 13 – May 5, 2024

The graphic arts flourished between the stock market crash of 1929 and the United States’ entry into World War II.  Associated American Artists (AAA), a print publisher and gallery based in New York City, revolutionized modern print collecting throughout the Great Depression (1929–1939) and beyond. The publisher’s mission was to bridge the gap between artists and their audiences by making fine art affordable to the general public. This program also provided a primary source of income to artists, including Thomas Hart Benton and Grant Wood.

AAA transformed modern print collecting as an affordable alternative to collecting paintings. They employed a vigorous marketing campaign directed to middle-class households to convince consumers to purchase artist-signed prints for $5 each, or about $100 today. AAA’s mail-order campaigns, magazine advertisements, department store sales, and traveling exhibitions supported artists and kept AAA in business until 2000. Drawn exclusively from the Farnsworth’s collection, this exhibition presents a snapshot of AAA’s efforts and artists’ contributions during its first decade.