Better Homes, Better Gardens

Better Homes, Better Gardens

1994
Artist
Kerry James Marshall, American, 1955-
Born: Birmingham, AL
Work Locations: Chicago, IL
Country
United States
painting, collage
Acrylic paint and paper collage on canvas
Funds from Polly and Mark Addison, the Alliance for Contemporary Art, Caroline Morgan, and Colorado Contemporary Collectors: Suzanne Farver, Linda and Ken Heller, Jan and Frederick Mayer, Beverly and Bernard Rosen, Annalee and Wagner Schorr, and anonymous donors
1995.77

Kerry James Marshall
Better Homes, Better Gardens, 1994
Acrylic paint and paper collage on canvas
Funds from Polly and Mark Addison, the Alliance for Contemporary Art, Caroline Morgan, and Colorado Contemporary Collectors: Suzanne Farver, Linda and Ken Heller, Jan and Frederick Mayer, Beverly and Bernard Rosen, Annalee and Wagner Schorr, and anonymous donors, 1995.77. © Kerry James Marshall

Dimensions
height: 100 in, 254.0000 cm; width: 142 in, 360.6800 cm
Inscription
"IL 2-8" in red URC; "MUHAMMED ALI FOUNDATION" in four windows; "422 units" on far R door; "37 bldgs." on center door; "19" on far L door; "better homes better garde" on banner at bottom; "WELCOME TO WENTWORTH GARDENS [further writing obscured by plants] CHICAGO HOUSING AUTHORITY OFFICE LOCATED" on sign at left side.
Department
Modern and Contemporary Art
Collection
Modern and Contemporary Art
Kerry James Marshall is a Chicago-based artist who grew up in public housing in the South and in Chicago. The experience informs many of his paintings, the subjects of which focus on the individual and collective efforts of the African-American residents to preserve their communities and their self-respect. The work, Better Homes, Better Gardens, is one in a series of “garden paintings,” the title referencing how many public housing projects are given the name “gardens.”
Exhibition History
  • "Retrospectacle: 25 Years of Collecting Modern and Contemporary Art"--Denver Art Museum, 11/16/2002 - 8/3/2003
  • "Focus: The Figure"--Denver Art Museum, 8/9/2008 - 2/2011
  • “Enduring Ideals: Rockwell, Roosevelt, and the Four Freedoms” — Denver Art Museum, 5/3/2020 – 8/30/2020