Advanced Search
Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, Bentonville, Arkansas. Photography by Dwight Primiano.

After the Flood

Artist: Joseph Paul Vorst (1897 - 1947)
Date: ca. 1940
28 x 36 in. (71.1 x 91.4 cm)
Framed: 34 in. × 43 1/8 in. × 1 7/8 in.
Medium: Oil on board
Credit Line: Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, Bentonville, Arkansas, 2007.220
Signed: l.l.: J. Vorst
Not on View
Accession Number: 2007.220
ProvenancePrivate Collection, Chicago, IL; to (D. Wigmore Fine Art, Inc., New York, NY); purchased by Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, Bentonville, AR, 2007
Label TextThis painting captures the devastating impacts of two of the most destructive floods in Arkansas history: the flooding of the Mississippi Valley in the spring of 1927 and the winter flood in 1937 of the Ohio-Mississippi Valley.

Tenant farmers and sharecroppers were already struggling from the effects of drought when the floodwaters spread into their homes. In addition, they were often forced to perform labor for their landlords, but were the last to receive food and other aid.

German-born Joseph Vorst moved to St. Louis, Missouri, in 1930, and became a member of the left-wing American Artists' Congress. A close friend of the Regionalist painter Thomas Hart Benton, Vorst’s subject matter included the plight of sharecroppers and hardworking farmers, and other scenes depicting American challenges and values.