She was compared to French painter Henri Rousseau and Breughel. It was comfort art. In her paintings there is no despair, unhappiness, or aging, yet this unrealistic view of life is presented with remarkable power. Grandma Moses ( Anna May Robertson Moses 1860-1961) invented a unique style of art, categorized as ”folk” yet her paintings actively betray the genre by removing realism and the folk idioms use of linear perspective.There is a sense of timelessness and animated suspension; a relationship with nature unlike most in the ”rustic” school.
In addition, there was an eclectic color palette livened by narratives involving action and movement, often imbued with a sense of humour. The luminous colors sealed the absence of the romanticism and the nostalgic atmospheres seem less from the past than modern life turned inside out.
”There emanates from her painting a light hearted optimism; the world she shows us is beautiful and it is good. You feel at home in all these pictures, and you know their meaning. The unrest and the neurotic insecurity of the present day make us inclined to enjoy the simple and affirmative outlook of Grandma Moses”.
Moses switched from embroidery art to painting at the age of 76 due to an arthritic condition and in part it is her understanding of the complex designs of sophiticated needlework which she could ”pattern” into her painting that gave them the
Moses’s relationship to populist art is more complicated than would appear. Her shapes and forms are often semi-abstract and they have a tendency to float if not nailed down by competing elements in the composition. There is the interplay between the concrete and the lyrical resulting in a style of pragmatic poetry. The content can also be complex rsulting in an ideology less apparent than her appropriation by conservative political circles would suggest. Her painting, ”Fourth of July” in honour of President Eisenhower hangs in the White House.