Hogs Killing a Snake

A work made of oil on canvas.

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  • A work made of oil on canvas.

Date:

c. 1930

Artist:

John Steuart Curry
American, 1897–1946

About this artwork

Along with Grant Wood and Thomas Hart Benton, John Steuart Curry attained significant fame as one of the three most important Regionalist painters of the 1930s. In 1941 Wood wrote about Curry: “It was action he loved most to interpret: the lunge through space, the split second before the kill, the suspended moment before the storm strikes.” Hogs Killing a Snake reveals his fascination with the violence of nature and the struggle for survival. Curry deliberately constructed the dynamic composition to heighten the vitality of his subject; the hogs converge from all angles upon the writhing snake, giving a sense of violent motion. Curry accentuated the vigor of the composition with his painting technique, using short, choppy brushstrokes and even scratching on the surface of the paint to suggest the bristling hair on the hogs’ backs. Although the subject was ostensibly drawn from a childhood experience, the painting transcends mere realism to become nearly epic.

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American Art

Artist

John Steuart Curry

Title

Hogs Killing a Snake

Origin

United States

Date

1930

Medium

Oil on canvas

Inscriptions

Signed l.r.: JOHN STEUART CURRY

Dimensions

76.5 × 97.3 cm (30 1/8 × 38 1/4 in.)

Credit Line

Restricted gift of an anonymous donor

Reference Number

1947.392

Extended information about this artwork

Object information is a work in progress and may be updated as new research findings emerge. To help improve this record, please email .

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