Artist
Grant Wood
American painter

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Grant Wood
American painter
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Birth Date

February 13, 1891

Death Date

February 12, 1942

jtucker's picture

Contributor

This man has one of the most glorious butt chins I have ever seen.

That crevice is so deep it probably has its own atmospheric climate down there. As enamored as I am with his stoic mandible, this is not what most people think of when they hear the name Grant Wood. People tend to think of rolling hills, the country life and old scary farmers.

Everything about this man screams country. Reigning from the farmlands of Iowa, some of his pastimes include: metalworking, teaching and lounging in cow pastures. While some artists find inspiration in the longing eyes of a beautiful model, Wood claims he got all of his best artistic ideas while milking cows. Hopefully he didn't take after the artist's infamous habit of shtupping the muse...

While painting was his passion, to keep financially afloat Wood engaged in various other creative endeavors. He produced advertisements, created stained glass windows and even designed a corn-themed dining room for a hotel. I guess you can take the boy out of the country but you can’t take the corn out of the boy.

Like all good farmers of his time, Wood was also married to a doting wife , but rumor has it that he was a closeted homosexual. In addition to being a little flamboyant, Wood was also a bit of an adulterer. While teaching painting at the University of Iowa, he got it on with his personal assistant and was subsequently fired. Pretty risqué for the country.

While it would appear that this man’s personal life was often in flux, people often looked to his art to help maintain the stoic American spirit during the Great Depression. He made quite an impact in his short career, but ultimately died the day before his 51st birthday of pancreatic cancer. 

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Here is what Wikipedia says about Grant Wood

Grant DeVolson Wood (February 13, 1891 – February 12, 1942) was an American painter best known for his paintings depicting the rural American Midwest, particularly American Gothic (1930), which has become an iconic painting of the 20th century.

Early life

Wood was born in rural Iowa, 4 mi (6 km) east of Anamosa, in 1891. His mother moved the family to Cedar Rapids after his father died in 1901. Soon thereafter, Wood began as an apprentice in a local metal shop. After graduating from Washington High School, Wood enrolled in The Handicraft Guild, an art school run entirely by women in Minneapolis in 1910 (now a prominent artist collective in the city). He is said to have later returned to the Guild to paint American Gothic. A year later, Wood returned to Iowa, where he taught in a rural one-room schoolhouse. In 1913, he enrolled at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and performed some work as a silversmith.

From 1922 to 1928, Wood made four trips to Europe, where he studied many styles of painting, especially Impressionism and post-Impressionism. However, it was the work of the 15th-century Flemish artist Jan van Eyck that influenced him to take on the clarity of this technique and to incorporate it in his new works.

Check out the full Wikipedia article about Grant Wood.