WPA Federal Art Project

Federal Art Project

The Federal Art Project (FAP) was the visual arts arm of the Great Depression-era New Deal WPA Federal One program in the United States. It operated from August 29, 1935 until June 30, 1943. Reputed to have created more than 200,000 separate works, FAP artists created posters, murals and paintings; some of which stand among the most significant pieces of public art in the country.

FAP's primary goals were to employ out-of-work artists and to provide art for non-federal government buildings: schools, hospitals, libraries and the like. The work was divided into art production, art instruction and art research; the primary output of the art research group was the Index of American Design.

The FAP was one of a short-lived series of Depression-era visual arts programs, which included the Section of Painting and Sculpture and the Public Works of Art Project (both of which, unlike the WPA-operated FAP, were operated by the United States Department of the Treasury).


Some of the well-known artists supported by the project:

*Willem de Kooning and Santiago Martínez Delgado were also employed by the Project but had to leave because they were not American citizens at the time.

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