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June 02, 2005

Stevan Dohanos Mural

Stevan Dohanos Mural

This is one of two murals in the Alvaro de Lugo Post Office in Charlotte Amalie (on main street across from Government Hill) on St. Thomas (sorry it isn't the greatest picture). The artist was Stevan Dohanos, an accomplished painter who was famous for his many Saturday Evening Post covers. While many think the paintings were part of the WPA project, the National Postal Museum website correctly points out that these works are part of the Section of Fine Arts program:

"Commonly known as "the Section," it was established in 1934 and administered by the Procurement Division of the Treasury Department. Headed by Edward Bruce, a former lawyer, businessman, and artist, the Section's main function was to select art of high quality to decorate public buildings—if the funding was available. By providing decoration in public buildings, the art was made accessible to all people. Post offices were located in virtually every community and available for viewing by all postal patrons—which made post office murals a truly democratic art form. Artists working for the Section were not chosen on the basis of need, but through anonymous competitions where the national jurors were often other artists."

If you are a visitor to St. Thomas (or a resident!) you really should take a moment when it town to pop in the post office to see these two murals. They are in excellent shape and an interesting part of Virgin Islands history.

Posted by afinta at June 2, 2005 02:35 PM


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