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Image of Tree Planting Group

Grant Wood
American, 1891–1942

Tree Planting Group


Object Type: Print
Creation Place: North America, American
8 3/8 in. x 10 7/8 in. (21.27 cm x 27.62 cm)
Medium and Support: Lithograph on paper
Accession Number: 1980.0010

Credit Line: Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Robert S. Weil, Sr.
Copyright: © The Estate of Grant Wood / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

The America of 1937 was still recovering from the effects of the Great Depression and witnessing the turmoil in Europe that would lead to World War II. Images such as Tree Planting Group were a reminder of the tremendous number of citizens of the United States descended from immigrants of Western Europe, many of whom settled in the Midwest and made lives as farmers or raised livestock. This group of children and a woman, who may be their teacher, reflects this population and the labor of tree planting mirrors the labor that their families invested in building the agrarian American economy. The image reflects upon the value of labor and education—the tree is being planted in front of a schoolhouse—thus portraying the tree and the children as investments in the country’s future.

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