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American Progress

Jose Maria Sert

Spanish. 1876 - 1945

Main Lobby of 30 Rockefeller Plaza

Born in Barcelona, Sert spent his adult life living in Paris and was internationally famous as a mural painter. He was commissioned to paint this mural after the Rockefellers fired Diego Rivera, who offended them by making Lenin a principal figure on his original fresco. Sert’s mural, the focal point of the lobby, depicts the development of America through the unity of brain and brawn. The three Graces symbolize man’s intellectual activity, while Titans and men working represent men of action. Abraham Lincoln, Ralph Waldo Emerson and the Center’s skyscrapers also play prominent roles.

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