Norman Rockwell – The Connoisseur

Joe did it again! We went to Value Village on a day that I tried to promise myself that I wouldn’t buy any puzzles. I’ve already written about this particular visit, so readers know that I went home with five puzzles! At first, I was only going to take home the two Tuco puzzles I had found, but Joe convinced me to take home this Pomegranate puzzle as well.

I mean, it wasn’t a hard sell, I was already pretty sure that I was going to get it, I showed it to joe and he said that it was pretty great and that I’d have to get it. That was it, the big persuasion.

So, Norman Rockwell, quite the body of work! He painted over 4000 paintings in his lifetime, many depicting “American life”. He has a lot of critics, many people comment that his paintings are a bit too idealistic and paint the American life as idyllic (apart from a few of his works). I always felt the same and I had never seen this painting of his, the Connoisseur.

Apparently, Rockwell was a big admirer of Contemporary Art and in 1961, he set out to paint a Jackson Pollock inspired piece. As I was puzzling I did wonder what his method was for painting this, so I looked it up! Rockwell had some journals in his library, that provided him with information about Pollock’s process. Instead of painting the connoisseur and then surround him with the abstract image, he first painted the abstract as a separate and complete image. He then positioned a cutout of his painting of the man over his abstract to test the final effect. Later, he combined the images for his final painting. It appeared on the cover of the Saturday evening post in 1962.

This was both an easy and challenging puzzle, the man and the surrounding area were pretty easy and that abstract painting was like my “Convergence” puzzle all over again! This was a complete puzzle, which I was very happy about, 1000 pieces, released by Pomegranate Artpiece Puzzles.