“Agriculture and Industries of Ventura” by artist Gordon K. Grant

If you haven’t seen the murals at the downtown library, it is worth the visit. The subject matter, created by depression era artist Gordon K. Grant, is “Agriculture and Industries of Ventura” – the style of art American Scene or Regionalist painting. Depicted are cattle, horses, fields and laborers of many different types including men milking cows and women packing citrus. They were created to celebrate the virtues of small town or rural life and advance an overt narrative favoring labor and the nationalist, pro-labor politics of the era. The murals, renovated in 1966, date from 1936-37 and were funded by the Federal Arts Project, under the New Deal WPA. They are very reminiscent of the murals of Diego Rivera and were painted around the same time of many of his murals.

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