Norman as well as those of foreign figures.

Norman Rockwell was a 20th-century American author, painter, and illustrator. He was a prolific artist, who produced more than 4,000 original works in his lifetime. Most of his works are either in public collections, or have been destroyed in fire or other misfortunes. Rockwell also was commissioned to illustrate more than 40 books, including Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn as well as painting the portraits for Presidents Eisenhower, Kennedy, Johnson and Nixon, as well as those of foreign figures. His works have a broad popular appeal in the United States for their reflection of American culture. Rockwell is most famous for the cover illustrations of everyday life he created for “The Saturday Night Post” magazine. The publication ran for over five decades.  Recently in the news, The Massachusetts Appeals Court blocked a much anticipated auction of art from the Berkshire Museum, including two paintings by the well known artist Norman Rockwell. One of the works that was intended to be auctioned included “Shuffleton’s Barbershop.”  This piece is a particularly famous painting done by Rockwell. In fact, the painting has an estimated sale price from between twenty million and  thirty million dollars.  The work is only one of seven pieces of art from the Pittsfield, Massachusetts museum that was supposed to be sold at auction.  The seven works were scheduled to be offered for sale by a well known auction company known as “Sotheby’s.” The company is based in New York. The plan was to raise just enough money to keep the museum running, according to sources.  However, many people are skeptical of this and believe that the sale of these paintings would just be for profitable reasons and not for the sake of the museums future.  The most expensive and well known peace that was intended to be auctioned was Norman Rockwell’s painting titled “Shuffleton’s Barbershop.” This work was released in 1950 as well, and it is considered to be done in a particular style of painting known in the art world as regionalism. “Shuffleton’s Babershop”  appeared on the cover of a newspaper called “The Saturday Evening Post”. This painting was Rockwell’s two hundred and sixty third overall out of three hundred and twenty two total paintings that were published on the cover of the Saturday Evening Post. Rockwell’s career with the Post spanned forty seven years, from his first cover illustration, “Boy With Baby Carriage” in 1916 to his last, which was a Portrait of John F. Kennedy, in 1963. “Shuffleton’s Barber shop” is a prime example of how Rockwell uses both light and dark colors in his work. All of the light in this composition seems like it comes from the back room.  However it still comes off as a very warm painting, despite the scene being portrayed occurring at night time. This is again done by adding in lighter colors to highlight details in the painting. In the backroom it looks like the people are playing instruments with the only audience bing a cat. One can imagine that Every night after work, this group of people come to this barbershop to get together and make music. One may chose to interpret the light as coming from the back room as a symbol of hope piercing through the darker room while music is playing. The contrast of light and dark allow the viewer to experience the painting as if they were looking into a real barbershop. The light allows the viewer to peer into the back room where he can see band members playing their instruments. The viewer takes the same eye as a little black cat spotted in the foreground of the darker room.  The controversy over selling these paintings at auction comes from a variety of different people. The sale had been opposed by two groups of plaintiffs, including Rockwell’s sons (family), as well as the office of the Massachusetts attorney general, who said that it would violate various trusts and restrictions related to how the works must be handled. The attorney general, Maura Healey, who had been seeking additional time to examine the museum’s plan, asked the court on Friday for an injunction halting the sale.(Colin Moynihan, 2017). The Court listened to this request and they stated that selling theses works was more of a risk than not selling them. The Court’s ruling officially prohibits the sale of any piece of artwork that was originally supposed to be sold at auction. Making it official would enforce punishment on the museum. This was only a temporary decision, however,  and the refusal of sale will not last forever. It seems as though the auction of such works will be discussed again at a later time, perhaps, after the passing of artists family members who hold sentimental attachment to such works.  Again, until further looked at, the decision to postpone the sale of the artwork remains the popular consensus.   The other work by Rockwell that was originally listed for auction is a piece titled “Blacksmith’s Boy , Heel and Toe (Shaftsbury Blacksmith Shop),” which was estimated to have a price of seven million to ten million dollars in value (less compared to Shuffletons Barbershop). This was created in 1940 and it is a canvas painting, painted with oil paint. In this painting there are two male figures forging iron with a crowd of people watching and cheering, almost like a competition of some sort. Both paintings are signed by Rockwell on the bottom corner. The other museum works to be offered on auction were “The White Dress” by Thomas Wilmer Dewing, “Hunter in Winter Wood” by George Henry Durrie and “Connecticut River Valley, Claremont, New Hampshire” by Albert Bierstadt.  On the other hand, Elizabeth McGraw, the president of the museum’s board of trustees called the court decision a “setback” for the institution and its neighbors. She stated, “The auction that held the promise of addressing our museum’s serious financial difficulties will have to proceed without our works, and our plans for the future will be delayed,” she said in a written statement. “Until that process resolves, we will continue to do what we do every day: bring our passion for art, science and discovery to our community.” The board of trustees for the museum believe that the courts decision is unethical and wrong. They mentioned how they will keep pushing for the auction to occur as planned. Museum organizations have condemned the museum’s deaccessioning plan, saying it violated guidelines against the sale of art to subsidize operating and other expenses.  Norman Rockwell’s three sons as well as a group of other individuals have sued separately to try to stop the sale completely. His sons also claim that selling his paintings for profit would go against what their father stood for and would break a promise he had. They also said it was simply unnecessary and unlawful. Besides for legal problems, there are emotional problems also. The Rockwell Family claimed to take serious offense to the sale of his paintings by this museum.There also exists a  activist group called “Save the Art” has been protesting the sale and expressing support for the attorney general through demonstrations at the Berkshire Museum. Other events were planned for the coming days at Sotheby’s (auction company) at York Avenue headquarters on Manhattan’s Upper East Side. There is a constant battle that now exists between money and art. Companies such as Sotheby’s, profit tremendously after auctions that deal with expensive items. Making money is their only goal. Collectors, who tend to have money will be on the museum’s side and will give their full support and money in order for the auction to go through.    The overall issue is convoluted when it comes to what the right decision should be. Many Laws come in to place in regard to that. In my opinion, I believe that the museum has the right to auction off these works of art since they are in their possession in the first place. Also, if the museum really is struggling with financial issues, then they should be able to use the money to solve those problems. The money made could be used to fix any financial issues which would let the museum to continue to operate, which would let every day people enjoy the art shown. Also, museums are a way to express the love of art to those are passionate about it to those eager to learn. However, if the money made by selling those pieces of art is used simply for profit then i would side with Rockwell’s sons. On the other hand, I believe that the artist must have the final say on where their art ends up. Clearly, Norman Rockwell cannot decide that today, but the closest thing to him are his family. His family should have an influence on where his work ends up whether it stays in the Berkshire museum or goes somewhere else. The final decision will be made with in a couple of weeks but no matter what the result is, the opposing side will find a way to get past it in some way or an other.