Thomas Hart BENTON
Thomas Hart Benton’s (1899-1975) name is practically synonymous with the American regionalist art movement. The fluid, undulating shapes of his figures and landscapes are one of the era’s signature styles. Although he was born in Missouri, his early career brought him to New York and Paris, where he sharpened his skill at depicting powerful symbols and developing striking and original color palettes. As an early adherent of Synchromism, as developed by Stanton MacDonald-Wright and Morgan Russell, Benton first embraced abstraction in painting. Credited as the first uniquely American abstract painting style, it suggested color was analogous to sound and should strive to be just as harmonious. His return to the American Heartland brought his mature style into being, and the lush rolling hills of the Missouri landscape where he spent much of his career are evident throughout his compositions, imbuing all subjects with an Americana-inspired strength, abundance, and regenerative spirit.