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Colorado & Regional Art

Regionalism

Regionalism, also known as American Scene Painting, portrayed American subjects with an entirely American approach (mid 1920s– mid 1940s). Famous examples are paintings by Thomas Hart Benton, Grant Wood and others, although Regionalism was not limited to the mid-west. Vintage regionalist paintings are stylized to the extent that they are not Realism or Impressionism, but they are still representational and not abstract. Since the term Regionalism can apply to any artwork done to portray a particular region at any time, vintage regional paintings can be referred to as Modernist Regionalism, which is a more descriptive term than Regionalism. These paintings represent an early style of modernism and they are not “realistic Regionalism” or “impressionistic Regionalism”. Starting in the 1940s, Regionalism was increasingly displaced by abstract art and, to a lesser extent, Surrealism.