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Image of Benediction in Georgia

George Bellows
American, 1882–1925

Benediction in Georgia


Object Type: Print
Creation Place: North America, American
16 1/4 in. x 20 1/16 in. (41.28 cm x 50.96 cm)
Medium and Support: Lithograph on paper
Accession Number: 1980.0005

Credit Line: Montgomery Museum of Fine Arts Association Purchase

This image of a preacher in a Georgia jail was published in the May, 1917 issue of the journal "The Masses". Bellows was a frequent contributor to this publication that embraced a radical, socially progressive editorial policy. The artist’s composition suggests the hypocrisy of social and religious programs aimed at prisoners, delivered by prosylatizers who, in addressing the perceived religious deficits of the prisoners, ignored their need for practical marketable skills or education.

Early lithographs such as this impression were designed by Bellows and printed with the assistance of George Miller, a highly skilled lithographic printer trained at the American Lithographic Company. When Bellows began to make lithographs in 1916, he convinced Miller to come to his studio to help print the stones, and Miller’s skilled intervention insured that the proofs were the quality that Bellows desired.

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