Visiting scholar in Art History, Austin Porter, will be giving a free lecture at Kent State University’s School of Art on Friday, February 1. His talk, titled "Bankrolling Bombs: How Art Museums Helped Finance World War II" will take place in room 165 at the Center for the Visual Arts (325 Terrace Dr.) from 12-1 p.m. All of the School of Art’s First Friday Lectures are free and open to the public. Austin Porter is an Assistant Professor of Art History and American Studies at Kenyon University.
During World War II the U.S. government sponsored numerous exhibitions in some of the nation’s most highly regarded art museums. In addition to expressing themes of patriotism, sacrifice, and American military might, these exhibitions also served as fund raising opportunities for the Treasury Department’s war bond program. This talk analyzes how the resulting installations blurred cultural distinctions between high art and mass media in order to generate economic capital for the fight abroad.