June 6 – August 9, 2009
A Touch of Humor explores the complex nature of humor. What amuses us? What roles do age, geography, cultural upbringing and personal experiences play in appreciating humor? While the exhibition includes works from the 19th century, it is the 20th century, particularly in American art, that encompasses a broad range of humorous expression. Adolf Dehn (1895-1968) is represented by several works, including his well-known satire of the scandalous 1912 painting September Morn. John Sloan’sReducing (1916) parodies the intentions of a young woman who exercises while her husband lies sleeping in bed. Norman Rockwell’s 1958 painting of a jockey Weighing In is featured. It and several other works were loaned to the Benton by the New Britain Museum of American Art.
It is hoped that A Touch of Humor will lift people’s spirits during these times and confirm that laughter is, indeed, the best medicine.