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Thomas Hart Benton (American, 1889-1975)


Birth Place: Neosho (Newton county, Missouri, United States)

Thomas Hart Benton was a famous painter and muralist who was born in Neosho, Missouri on April 15, 1889. Benton studied for years in Paris and New York City during the 1920s when he would become one of the founding members of the Regionalist art movement. Thomas Hart Benton was known for his paintings that glorified the Midwest despite spending over 20 years in New York City.

Benton would become popular after his painting "Indiana Murals" became a part of the 1933 Century of Progress exhibition. The painting depicted the lives of normal people in the state of Indiana, and it is currently on display at Indiana University in Bloomington.

"Time" magazine placed Thomas Hart Benton on its cover on December 24, 1932. The magazine also featured an article entitled "The U.S Scene" that proclaimed Benton as one of the saviors and new heroes of American art.

After being ostracized by the New York community, Benton moved back to Missouri in 1935. Shortly after moving back home, Benton was commissioned to paint "A Social History of Missouri" for the state capitol building. Benton would go on to create several more iconic works of art in Missouri including "The Year of Peril" and "Lincoln. He died at the age of 85 shortly after putting the finishing brush strokes on "The Sources of Country Music" for the Country Music Hall of Fame in his home in Kansas City, Missouri.

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