Then and Now

Happy 2023! According to Larry David, I’m way past the statute of limitations in saying “Happy New Year!” But according to me, we have the entire month of January. How about that, Larry David? (2023 Julie is coming across very spicy!)

Did you read the Twitter thread of newspaper clippings from 1923 detailing what people thought life would be like one hundred years later? Now, in fact. There were a few that were spot-on, like the prediction that some women would be shaving their heads and some men would be wearing their hair curly! Others still have not come to fruition (but the year is still young!) like cancer being eradicated, gasoline being replaced with “radio”, and women blackening their teeth as a fashion statement. I’m sort of into that last one. Coffee and red wine stains, be damned! I’m blackening my teeth!

All this got me thinking- how has art evolved in the last hundred years? Would the prominent artists of 1923 be shocked? Impressed? Jealous they didn’t think of that first? According to, here are the top ten artists of 1923:

  1. Pablo Picasso
  2. George Bellows
  3. Robert Henri
  4. Childe Hassam
  5. Joseph Pennell
  6. Henri Matisse
  7. Ernest Lawson
  8. (Richard) Hayley Lever
  9. Auguste Rodin
  10. Frederick Carl Frieseke

Just for fun, here are a few of their pieces beside art from modern day artists.

I think there’s a lot to be said for artists that paved (maybe mosaiced) the way. Surely the Picassos and Bellows of last century would be excited about the innovation and creativity happening today. Less excited about smashing cake and soup onto famous masterpieces, I think. But if they took a look at Janet Hill, Kelly Reemtsen, or Jeff Koons how could they not be delighted about how art has evolved? Of course, the more things change, the more they stay the same, and while art changes all the time, it continues to touch and change us in the best ways.

Here’s to an artsy 2023, friends!

Posted in: art

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