The post office contains a 1942 Section of Fine Arts mural “Coon Hunt” painted by Richard Haines in 1942.
Richard Haines was born in Iowa in 1906 and chose realistic, contemporary subjects that directly related to the life of the people in the communities where his murals were located. In Coon Hunt, he portrayed a group of men hunting raccoons at night by lantern with dogs. The intensity of the hunters and dogs is palpable, though some of the hunters and dogs are looking around, seemingly wondering if the coon has escaped. The hunter to the far left has a wild-eyed expression that may be attributable to the jug at his feet. In the background is a moonlit sky with clouds reminiscent of Thomas Hart Benton.
Richard Haines was born in 1906 in Marian, IA and died in 1984 in Los Angeles. His initial art education was at the Minneapolis School of Art and then studied with muralist John Norton in Chicago and fresco technique at the Fountainbleau School in France. He was one of the more prolific New Deal muralists, subsequently moved to Los Angeles and after WW2 taught art at the Chouinard Art Institute and the Otis Art Institute, retiring in 1974.
Location of other murals by artist:
Berwyn, IL; Cresco, IA; Wichita, KS; Hastings, MN; Shelton, WA
Park and Markowitz, Democratic Vistas, Post Offices and Public Art in the New Deal, 1984. Askart.com, biography.
Project originally submitted by Charles Swaney on December 15, 2012.
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