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20th-21st Century Gallery

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Tired Travelers

20th Century
40 x 50 1/8 in. (101.6 x 127.3 cm)

Julius Bloch, American, (1888–1966)

Object Type: PAINTINGS
Creation Place: North America
Medium and Support: Oil on canvas
Credit Line: Gift of the Estate of Julius Bloch
Accession Number: 67-P-17
Gallery Label:

Julius Bloch emigrated from Germany to Philadelphia with his Jewish family in 1893. He studied at the Pennsylvania Museum School and later at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts. As an immigrant he identified with working class people, many of whom suffered racial discrimination and financial difficulty. Inspired by one of his favorite artists and teachers, Thomas Eakins, Bloch became interested in Social Realism, an artistic Movement which was popular in America during the 1920s and 1930s. Over the course of his life Bloch became close friends with Benjamin Bernstein, an art patron who acquired many of his works and later donated some to the La Salle University Art Museum and other cultural institutions.

In Tired Travelers, Bloch illustrates a scene on a crowded train. The weary figures are seated in the train benches. The darkness of the windows and the way the people are dressed suggest that it is early evening and that the subjects are on their way home after a laboring day. The individuals depicted are very diverse in ethnicity, featuring an African American man and an Eastern European immigrant couple. The travelers are wearing the day’s work on their faces, displaying gloomy expressions while sleeping and resting during their travel.

- Tricia Sackor, Intern, Class of 2017
Current Location: Art Museum : 20 C Gallery

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