01 About

Norman
Rockwell
Museum

Presents

The gallery will open at the end of September to showcase Rockwell's famous illustrations inspired by Franklin D. Roosevelt. All are welcome to help support the cause.

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Freedom of Speech Freedom of Worship Freedom from Want Freedom from Fear

02 Freedom of Speech

Freedom
of Speech

1 of 4

The first of the Four Freedoms paintings by Norman Rockwell that were inspired by United States President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s State of the Union Address, known as Four Freedoms, which he delivered on January 6, 1941.

Freedom of Speech depicts a scene of a local town meeting in which Jim Edgerton, the lone dissenter to the town selectmen’s announced plans to build a new school, was accorded the floor as a matter of protocol.

The blue-collar speaker wears a plaid shirt and suede jacket. He has dirty hands and a darker complexion than others in attendance.

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03 Freedom of Worship

Freedom
of Worship

2 of 4

The painting shows the profiles of eight heads in a modest space. The various figures represent people of different faiths in a moment of prayer.

Particularly, three figures on the bottom row (right to left): a man with his head covered carrying a religious book who is Jewish, an older woman who is Protestant, and a younger woman with a well-lit face holding rosary beads who is Catholic.

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04 Freedom from Want

Freedom
from Want

3 of 4

The Norman Rockwell Museum describes it as a story illustration for The Saturday Evening Post, complementary to the theme, but the image is also an autonomous visual expression.

The painting shows an aproned matriarch presenting a roasted turkey to a family of several generations, in Rockwell’s idealistic presentation of family values. The patriarch looks on with fondness and approval from the head of the table, which is the central element of the painting.

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05 Freedom from Fear

Freedom
from Fear

4 of 4

The painting shows children resting safely in their beds, oblivious to the perils of this world, as their parents look on. Their mother tucks them in while their father holds a newspaper describing the horrors of the ongoing conflict. However, his attention is fully on his children and not on the alarming headlines.

According to another view, the children are already asleep, and their parents are checking on them in their shared narrow bed before they themselves turn in for the night. The father appears as the “classic Rockwell onlooker” who serves as a viewer within the painting. In the background is a lit hallway and a stairway leading to the first floor.

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