The Art of War: MoMA Acquisitions 1940-1949

The Art in Context

Breakdown by Department

Below you will see our fourth visualized bit of data, that of art acquired by the MoMA as it pertains to the department each year between 1940 and 1949. We have chosen to represent this information through circle graphs which depict the date acquired, number of acquisitions, and associated department. Over the first half of this decade, it is not clear which department was the most valued, as “Drawings and Prints,” “Photography” as well as “Architecture & Design” all had good years in terms of numbers. However, after the war had ended, “Drawings & Prints” made up the majority of acquisitions each year until the end of the decade. Notably, “Film” is not well-represented in the first half of the decade, and it is absent from the second half.


Below you will see our fifth visualized bit of data, that of the first selected pieces by the MoMA as they pertain to a particular department each year between 1940 and 1949. Represented within the interactive timeline are works of art that signify either the highest number of acquisitions or the lowest for that year; please peruse the interface below to get started and explore. It should be noted here that even though in 1948 there was only one photography acquisition, there is no available media on the MoMA’s website for that piece. Thus, we determined that the second-lowest departmental category (painting and sculpture) should be represented in its place.

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