Norman Rockwell's Study for Schenley Company’s Cream of Kentucky Ad Campaign features a model he frequently used, known as William 'Pop' Fredericks. Identifiable by his ruddy cheeks, beetle brows and the deep laugh lines around his eyes and mouth, Fredericks was a friend and neighbor of the artist, and posed for numerous Rockwell advertisements and Post covers in the 1920s and 1930s. His expressive features certainly captured readers’ attention and helped him play many roles in Rockwell’s work, including a doctor, a cellist, a politician and even Santa Claus. Rockwell created advertisements for Schenley’s Cream of Kentucky bourbon for several years beginning in the late 1930s, and while it appears this study never made it to print, it embodies the merriment of the holiday season in Fredericks’ smiling face and in the Christmas wreath hanging playfully around his neck.
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Private collection (employee of Schenley Company, New York City, 1937-1947)
By descent through the family to collector’s niece, private collection, North Haverhill, New Hampshire