In this powerful new biography of the man behind America's best-known painting, American Gothic (1930), art historian Tripp Evans challenges the all-American persona Grant Wood so carefully cultivated — revealing, instead, the complex figure the public never saw: a man deeply ambivalent about his region who labored mightily to conceal his homosexuality. Evans presents an artist of extraordinary gifts, haunted by hidden longing and unorthodox relationships with family members — including the powerful mother who shared Wood's studio and bedroom for more than thirty years, and the wife who disastrously replaced her. Grant Wood: A Life is a fully dimensional portrait of the man who became a national symbol, while secretly embodying much of what conservative America vilified.
2011 Marfield Prize: The National Award for Arts Writing
2011 Benjamin F. Shambaugh Award (State Historical Society of Iowa)
Finalist, The Lambda Literary Award (Memoir/Biography)
*Henry Adams is the author of Tom and Jack: The Intertwined Lives of Thomas Hart Benton and Jackson Pollock (Bloomsbury: 2009)