Walter Haskell Hinton: Image Maker for Deere Print
News Releases - Art, Galleries & Museums
Written by Natalie Dunlop   
Thursday, 17 October 2013 07:05

Davenport, Iowa (October 16, 2013) – Walter Haskell Hinton: Image Maker for Deere is an exhibition of Walter Haskell Hinton works from the Deere & Company collection. The exhibition will be on display at the Figge Art Museum beginning Saturday in the second floor print gallery.

At a time when tractors replaced teams of horses, Hinton was hired by John Deere in 1934 to humanize the tractor by making it seem like a part of the family. His work helped make the John Deere Model D, produced from 1925 to 1953, an icon of American manufacturing.

The exhibition includes the iconic Boy Driving Tractor painting as well as lesser-known works and examples of printed materials using Hinton’s images, including his 12-panel biography of John Deere. Originally created as a calendar, the painted biography portrays Deere’s invention and production of the modern plow as a key element in the taming of the American West and the fulfillment of the country’s “Manifest Destiny.”

In his work for Deere, Hinton demonstrated tremendous creativity in presenting the product—a John Deere tractor—in a way that made it emotionally appealing. Hinton’s work is the forerunner of today’s advertising industry, which uses sophisticated psychology and visual technology to sell products 24 hours a day.

Hinton provides a unique window into the 1930s. With their obvious idealization of farm life, his pictures look beyond the Depression to an era when daily life would be transformed by technology and industry. The exhibition is sponsored by John Deere and will be on view through February 2, 2014.

Companion Event:  

Curator Talk

Thursday, October 24

7 p.m. / FREE


Nathan Augustine, collections manager at Deere & Company and curator of Walter Haskell Hinton: Image Maker for Deere, will be speaking in the John Deere Auditorium about the Hinton exhibition at 7 p.m. His presentation is titled “Walter Haskell Hinton: Illustrator of Corporate History.”

About the Figge Art Museum

The Figge Art Museum is located on the riverfront in downtown Davenport at 225 West Second Street. Hours are from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Tuesday through Saturday and Sundays 12-5 p.m. Thursdays the museum is open until 9 p.m. Admission to the museum and tour is $7. Admission is free to Figge members and institutional members and free to all on Thursday evenings from 5 p.m. – 9 p.m.. To contact the museum, please call 563.326.7804, or visit

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