About the Exhibition

The power of images to shape cultural narratives is revealed in this dynamic and evolving exhibition, which invites viewers to trace the origins and legacy of the Four Freedoms from the trials of the Great Depression and World War II to the Civil Rights movement of the 1960s. The Exhibition runs through May 31, 2021. LEARN MORE

Rockwell’s Four Freedoms

Norman Rockwell popularized the Franklin D. Roosevelt's Four Freedoms when the paintings appeared in consecutive The Saturday Evening Posts. The Four Freedoms toured the nation and raised over $3 million war bonds for the war effort. LEARN MORE

Freedom’s Legacy

In the 1960’s, leaving behind his beloved storytelling scenes, Norman Rockwell threw himself into a new genre—the documentation of social issues. As evidenced in his Freedoms paintings, he wanted to make a difference with his art, and as a trusted and highly marketable illustrator, he had the opportunity to do so. Humor and pathos—traits that made his Saturday Evening Post covers successful—were replaced by the direct, reportorial style of magazine editorials. LEARN MORE

Curriculum Lab

The lessons and ideas for learning in the Norman Rockwell Museum’s Four Freedoms Curriculum are adaptable for elementary and secondary grade levels, and educators are encouraged to choose those best suited to individual class needs and educational goals. LEARN MORE

Now available as a virtual exhibition!

Norman Rockwell: Imagining Freedom Goes Virtual

Organized by the Norman Rockwell Museum, Imagining Freedom is a virtual exhibition that explores the history and enduring legacy of President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s concept of the Four Freedoms. The exhibition also highlights the important role played by Norman Rockwell and other American artists in communicating and advancing these universal values.

Purchase Virtual Exhibition

Rockwell, Roosevelt & the Four Freedoms at the Henry Ford Museum

Enduring Ideals: Rockwell, Roosevelt & the Four Freedoms Tour

2018-2020 Tour Highlights

Explore the highlights from the Enduring Ideals: Rockwell, Roosevelt & the Four Freedoms Tour that from 2018-2020 took Rockwell’s Imagining Freedom art and the work of other creators to New York, Detroit, Washington DC, Normandy, France, Houston, and Denver.



Picturing Freedom: A Century of Illustration

For designers, cartoonists, and illustrators, many questions arise when creating art that takes up socially significant, sometimes controversial themes. Some choose the D.I.Y. route, working independently with a free hand, without access to the large scale distribution that comes with a recognizable masthead. Others work with leading news organizations and magazines, agreeing to collaborate in exchange for access to audiences. Popular art has always involved such choices. What are the tradeoffs? What are the rewards? This timely symposium will explore historical and contemporary notions of freedom as well as the role of illustration as a force in shaping public perception. How has published imagery affected decision-making, public policy, and cultural understanding? Prominent authors, illustrators, and scholars will offer perspectives. Share your observations by participating in all or some of these compelling conversations.

This program is supported in part by the Berkshire Taconic Community Foundation.

Media Sponsor:
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Imagining Freedom Sponsors

Rockwell, Roosevelt and the Four Freedoms is Sponsored by

Jay Alix, The Alix Foundation, Hobson/Lucas Foundation, Travelers, Major Support provided by: National Endowment for the Humanities, Anonymous, Michael Bakwin, Helen Bing, Elephant Rock Foundation, Annie & Ned Lamont, Lawrence and Marilyn Matteson, Ted Slavin, Heritage Auctions, Ford Foundation, National Endowment for the Arts, Additional Support provided by: Anthony and Susan Consigli, Ralph and Audrey Friedner, Louise Holland, Our GoFundMe Supporters, Curtis Licensing, Norman Rockwell Family Foundation, and the Berkshire Eagle.