On Thursday, March 31st the McCormick Library is bringing art historian Dr. Tom Pitts back to McCormick for another interesting presentation. 

Did you know that on most days you are a walking art gallery?  Well, yes, your clothes and accessories, but also, you will usually have a pocket or purse full of art. Have you ever thought of The Art on American Paper Currency?  You are a walking museum of American portraiture.  You collect this art, and every day, you wish you had more of it.  You look down at it wistfully as it goes away from you, but do you ever wonder where the images originated?

Who first created that iconic image of George Washington on a dollar bill? The artist was Gilbert Stuart, and the painting was begun in 1796 and never finished. Surely, it is one of the most reproduced artworks in the entire world. Forget the few reproductions of Leonardo’s Mona Lisa and Van Gogh’s Sunflowers. Those works are left in the shade by reproductions of Stuart’s work. Those engravings of Washington make up almost half of the paper currency printed by the Bureau of Engraving and Printing.  The federal government printed 1,856,000,000 copies of that portrait of Washington in 2010 alone.  

Beyond the dollar bill, who were the artists who created the paintings and photographs found on the five, ten, twenty, etc?  Who were those artists who made the images we so often see, but seldom consider as artistic creations?

On Thursday evening March 31st, at 6:00 pm at the McCormick Library, Dr. Tom Pitts, art historian at Lander University, will take you through the history of the art in your pocket.  The entertaining and informative presentation will make you see your money in a whole new way.  Best of all, you will not be asked  to part with any of your collection of currency art because the event is free, and all are invited to attend.