World War I had a profound impact on American art and culture. Nearly every major artist responded to events, whether as official war artists, impassioned observers, or participants on the battlefields. It was the moment when American artists, designers, and illustrators began to consider the importance of their contributions to the wider world and to visually represent the United States' emergent role in modern global politics. World War I and American Art provides an unprecedented consideration of the impact of the conflict on American artists and the myriad ways they reacted to it.
Artists took a leading role in chronicling the war, crafting images that influenced public opinion, supported mobilization efforts, and helped to shape how the appalling human toll was mourned and memorialized. World War I and American Art features some eighty artists—including Ivan Albright, George Bellows, Marsden Hartley, Childe Hassam, Violet Oakley, Georgia O’Keeffe, Man Ray, John Singer Sargent, and Claggett Wilson—whose paintings, sculptures, drawings, prints, photographs, posters, and ephemera span the diverse visual culture of the period to tell the story of a crucial turning point in the history of American art.