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Trinity Church and World Trade Center, New York
13 1/2 x 10 1/2 in. (34.3 x 26.7 cm)
(Savannah, GA, 1906 - 1976, Rochester, NY)
Medium and Support:
Watercolor and gouache with graphite on board
Gift of the Estate of Ralph Avery
Location: Not currently on view
Rochester artist Ralph Avery juxtaposed the World Trade Center with Trinity Church in a colorful scene painted shortly after the towers were completed in 1973. In reality, the church, a symbol of old New York (it was founded in 1696), is dwarfed by neighboring skyscrapers, but from Avery’s vantage point, the cross-topped steeple competes with the surrounding buildings for the highest point in the scene. Perhaps Avery was inserting his own point of view about the competing roles of God and Mammon in that Wall Street neighborhood. As an illustrator for magazines that were bastions of middle-class, conservative values – Saturday Evening Post and Reader’s Digest — Avery may have been expressing the publisher’s values as well.
[Label text, 2003]