Eastman Painting Goes First Class
A painting that has been a favorite of Eastman Theatre patrons since the building's opening is on display for the rest of the world to enjoy.
Maxfield Parrish's Interlude, the original of which now hangs in the Memorial Art Gallery, was one of 20 works chosen by the U.S. Post Office for the "American Illustrators" stamp series.
The series also features work by Norman Rockwell, James Montgomery Flagg, Rose O'Neill, and others.
Known as The Lute Players, the painting was commissioned in 1922 by Eastman for the theater.
Although by the 1920s Parrish was the highest-paid artist in America and his works were said to hang in one out of every four American homes, he was intrigued by Eastman's plan to build a new theater in downtown Rochester.
In a 1922 letter to the founder of Eastman Kodak Company, Parrish wrote:
"[O]ne of your architects told me the idea of the theatre: to bring the people there with moving pictures, and then gradually expose them to better and better music. I think the idea is a splendid one. . . ."
"Were I rich, I would found no libraries at all," Parrish went on. "I would endow music, good music, and lots of music. I wish with all my heart it were my medium instead of bad pictures."
In February, the Eastman School held a special cancellation ceremony, complete with "Eastman Theatre Station" postal mark to highlight the stamp's debut.
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