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Benton Project — A World Affair: Regionalism after Globalization

through the Sycamores by Caleb Weintraub


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At the center of Regionalist ideology is the search for truth through painting. Thomas Hart Benton sought to create a window into society, revealing both the unflattering and the taboo, while some of his contemporaries chose to depict bucolic images of the American landscape. Rather than shy from political and controversial subject matter, Benton faced these themes head on, forcing his audience to address the unsettling reality of an industrialized America.

Inspired by the social and public aspects of Thomas Hart Benton’s work, Your Art Here will launch a contemporary work by an Indiana-based painter, Caleb Weintraub, who shares Benton’s large-scale, head-on approach. YAH will bring Caleb’s work to the public sphere through a public display and performance, in collaboration with events related to the Benton symposium, “Thomas Hart Benton’s Indiana Murals at 75: Public Art and Public University,” sponsored by the Indiana University Art Museum in Bloomington.

Your Art Here has commissioned Caleb Weintraub, Assistant Professor of Painting at Indiana University, to create a new work vested with Benton’s confrontational spirit. This painting will be converted into a billboard and displayed in several locations throughout the state of Indiana. Additionally, suitable public architecture will be identified for a temporary public display of the original painting. Finally a third public component along the lines of a pageant-performance art piece related to Weintraub’s painting will take place.

  • July 2008: Artwork on display on Billboard 101, 101 East 6th Street (Walnut/6th Street), downtown Bloomington
  • August 2008: Artwork on display on Massachusetts Ave Billboard Project, 922 Massachusetts Avenue, downtown Indianapolis
  • September/October 2008: Painting storefront display at Michael Lindsay Photography & Video Studio as part of the Lotus World Music and Arts Festival, 110 East 6th Street (Walnut/6th Street), downtown Bloomington
  • Fall 2008: Painting Performance TBA

The Your Art Here Benton Project, “A World Affair: Regionalism after Globalization,” is supported by the Efroymson Family Fund, a Central Indiana Community Foundation Fund and by partners such as the Lotus World Music and Arts Festival and Michael Lindsay Photography & Video Studio.