Victory of Light over Darkness [For the Auditorium of the High School of Central Needle Trades (now known as the High School of Fashion Industries), New York]

 
Victory of Light over Darkness [For the Auditorium of the High School of Central Needle Trades (now known as the High School of Fashion Industries), New York]
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  • Title :     Victory of Light over Darkness [For the Auditorium of the High School of Central Needle Trades (now known as the High School of Fashion Industries), New York]
  • Artist:     Ernest Fiene Artist
  • Accession:     85.5.3.1
  • Country:     United States New York New York
  • Date:     1938 executed in fresco secco, 1939-1940
  • Dimensions:     Inches 28-3/4 69 2 Dimensions, framed, Centimeters 73.0 175.3 5.1 Dimensions, framed
  • Collection:     Object
  • Category:     Paintings and Sculpture
  • Collection Theme:     WPA and the New Deal
  • Subject:     Industry , WPA/Federal Arts Project , Figurative , Immigrant , Cityscape , Skyscraper , Public Works , Laborers/Workers , Labor Unions/Unionism , Education , New Deal
  • Credit Line:     The Wolfsonian–Florida International University, Miami Beach, Florida, The Mitchell Wolfson, Jr. Collection
  • URL:     85.5.3.1.JPG
  • Tags:     WPA and the New Deal~Paintings and Sculpture
Description:
Tempera on board mural study symbolizing disorganized society being challenged by enlightenment; in the background are scores of immigrants entering America through Castle Gardens; they pass to the left to a typical lower East Side street, past the New York skyline of the day; further in the background is the rosy hue of a future skyline; below on the right are shown the sweat shop, home work, and child labor conditions of early manufacturing in NY over which hovers the huge green figure of Greed who, with his right hand clutches the cut cloth which typifies what in the textile industry was known as the "struggle for the bundle"; the central group illustrates people carrying off these bundles for home work, a typical sight on the lower East Side before 1910 (Fiene, in fact, based his central female figure here on a well-known Lewis Hine photo); to the left is a large figure symbolizing Enlightenment, whose right hand points to the great Triangle Fire, the disaster which first drew public attention to the prevailing conditions in the needle trades; below the figure of Enlightenment is a group of prominent persons in labor, manufacturing and civic life largely responsible for the reform of conditions, they include Lillian Wald, Louis D. Brandeis, Al Smith and others.