Artists and Writers of the 1920s

By: Samantha Choknumtumnukit and Patricia Debosz

"The Roaring Twenties" - "The Jazz Age" - "The Golden Twenties

The 1920s was a thriving time for Americans. Consumerism created "the boom" in the economy. For the first time, this allowed more people to be able to afford artwork for their homes. This also caused Americans to begin seeing artwork more seriously making this periods one of the most active and important periods for more serious art.
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"Jeunesse" by: Palmer Hayden

In 1920, the Harlem Renaissance began. The Harlem Renaissance was a cultural movement producing new African American art, literature, and music to America. One artist produced by this was Palmer Hayden.

The picture: influenced by jazz. Harlem had been a important center for jazz. This was most likely inspired by watching dancing at the Savoy- Harlem's most famous Jazz Club

Harlem Renaissance

Georgia O'Keeffe

In the 1920s, artist Georgia O'Keeffe definately stands out. For the century, her paintings reminiscing American landscape, overpowering flowers, and sun-bleached desert bones became extremely popular.

O'Keeffee has become one of the most important American artists by mid-1920s.

Stieglitz made a sale of six of her calla lily paintings for $25,000-the largest sum ever paid for a group of paintings by a living American artist. Even though the sale began to fall through, Stieglitz's promotion of the potential sale drew extensive media attention.

The Jazz Age

The Roaring Twenties was also known as the Jazz Age. In the 1920s, Jazz music began to grow in popularity. People owned pianos, played sheet music, and listened to records as their interests grew. One in particular, Louis Armstrong, became one of the most famous jazz musicians of all time. Playing trumpet, cornet, and singing, this artist from New Orleans changed times with his music and acting talents.


On November 8th, 1929 in New York City, the Museum of Modern Art opened on 53rd street. It was founded by Lillie P. Bliss, Mary Quinn Sullivan, and Abby Aldrich Rockefeller. This was the first museum to display modern art. These included architecture/design, drawings, film/video, painting/sculpture, photography, and prints/illustrated books. This museum contributed greatly to the spreading of modern visual arts.
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Pictured Above: Georges Braque "Man with a Guitar"

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"The Lost Generation"

Writers of the 1920s were called "The lost generation" because it was right after World War I and the idea of acting virtuously and that good things would come was destroyed. Some popular writers during this time period were Ernest Hemingway, Scott Fitzgerald, and Gertrude Stein.

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He was know as the creator of the "Jazz Age". In his books, the illusion of happiness hides a loneliness that the main characters have. His dad greatly influenced him to never be a failure in life. Fitzgerald always wanted to become well known and it is ironic that his work is better know now that it was during his time.
"Either you think, or else others have to think for you and take power from you."


"Cut out all these exclamation points. An exclamation point is like laughing at your own joke."



He did not write like the typical 19th century Victorian Era. He replaced that with a direct prose based on actions.

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"All things truly wicked start from innocence."


Mini BIO - Ernest Hemingway

Gertrude Stein:

She started as a central figure in the Parisian art world when she first came to France in 1903 until she died. She mostly wrote poems and fictional pieces with quotes that are still known today, yet she was not very successful.

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"Everybody gets so much information all day long that they lose their common sense."


John Passos:

In the start of the 1920s he started his career by writing war-related books such as, "One Man's Initiation" and "Three Soldiers". He died in 1970 but his last work was published five years later called "Century's Ebb".

"Accidents will happen in the best regulated families."

-John Dos Passos-

T.S Eliot:

He received the Nobel Peace Prize for Literature in 1948. He was introduced tho poetry first when he read Arthur Symon's "The Symbolist Movement in Literature". His reputation was established by "portrait of a Lady", "Preludges" and a few other works. He was also a part of the golden age of Harvard philosophy.

Ezra Pound:

He is one of the most controversial poets of the 20th century because of his political views. He never had a large reading audience because of "his technical innovations and use of unconventional poetic materials often baffled even sympathetic readers".

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The 1920s Changed America

Overall, the 1920s were a revolutionary time for the arts. Many artists and writers became active during this decade and developed great pieces of work that we enjoy today.