Lot 68
  • 68

Norman Rockwell 1894 - 1978

500,000 - 700,000 USD
1,874,500 USD
bidding is closed


  • Norman Rockwell
  • Doctor and Doll
  • signed Norman Rockwell (lower right)
  • oil on canvas
  • 33 by 24 inches
  • (83.8 by 61 cm)
  • Painted in 1942.


The Upjohn Company, Kalamazoo, Michigan, 1942 (commissioned from the artist)
Acquired by the present owner, 2003


Stockbridge, Massachusetts, Norman Rockwell Museum, The Picture of Health: Norman Rockwell Paintings, November 2003-May 2004, p. 18, illustrated in color p. 19Stockbridge, Massachusetts, Norman Rockwell Museum, June-September 2006, July-September 2008, July-September 2009, June-September 2011, February-April 2012 (on loan)
Stockbridge, Massachusetts, Norman Rockwell Museum; Old Lyme, Connecticut, Florence Griswold Museum; Kalamazoo, Michigan, Kalamazoo Institute of Art; Mobile, Alabama, Mobile Museum of Art; Fredericksburg, Virginia, Gari Melchers Home and Studio; El Paso, Texas, El Paso Museum of Art; Sandwich, Massachusetts, Heritage Museum and Gardens, Picturing Health: Norman Rockwell and the Art of Illustration, January 2007-September 2012


Laurie Norton Moffatt, Norman Rockwell: A Definitive Catalogue, Stockbridge, Massachusetts, 1986, vol. I, no. A831, p. 570, illustrated

Catalogue Note

For his fourth painting for Upjohn, Rockwell proposed the idea of a doctor visiting with a little girl and her doll. Although he had used this basic format and subject many years before as a Saturday Evening Post cover, Rockwell assured the company that he would modernize the image and imbue it with “1941 character.” Rockwell began Doctor and Doll during a 1942 winter vacation in Alhambra, California. He selected his neighbor Eli Harvey, a renowned animal sculptor, to pose as the doctor. He kept his word to Upjohn by dressing the young girl and her doll in contemporary fashions. Despite these time-specific details, the picture remains evocative of an era that was quickly disappearing by the 1940s. The portrayal of a grandfatherly family doctor, typical of Rockwell’s characterizations of the period, recalls a time when physicians still made house calls, or even took the time to check a doll’s pulse to earn her mother’s trust. Doctor and Doll appeared as a display in pharmacy windows and thousands of doctors’ offices, hospitals and clinics throughout the country.  The doctor/patient relationship, depicted as one of trust and caring, suited the corporate image Upjohn wanted to project, but also conveys the hopefulness and idealism that consistently characterized Rockwell’s view of the American experience.