"1934: A New Deal for Artists" celebrates the 75th anniversary of the US Public Works of Art Program, drawing on the Smithsonian American Art Museum's unparalleled collection. In 1934, against the backdrop of the Great Depression, the US government created its first program to support the arts. The Public Works of Art Program lasted for six months, from December 1933 to June 1934, and artists from across the US were encouraged to depict the American scene and boost morale through art. The Program paid artists to paint regional, recognisable subjects - portraits, cityscapes and landscapes, images of both city and rural life - that reminded the public of the essential American values of hard work, community and optimism. The 55 paintings in the book are a lasting visual record of America at a specific moment in time; a response to an economic situation all too familiar today.