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"Young Man Receiving Divine Call"

Raphaello Raphaelli, also known as "Ralph"

Another of Raphaelli's later masterpieces, "Young Man Receiving Divine Call" depicts an otherwise unassuming individual overwhelmed by having been told to "Come on down!" by host Bob Barker, whose inviting hand is shown at the upper left of the picture. Other contestants do their best to hide their disappointment at not being chosen by pretending to point out and encourage the lad. The older man behind the winner is obviously mortified at having thought he was the one being chosen.

Raphaelli's later Depressionist works stressed this strong contrast between joy and regret in much the same manner. His "Old Man with Dud Lottery Ticket" is  considered the best in this series, although some scholars hold that "The Disenchanted Oscar Nominees " and "Jackpot!" are stronger, the latter because the one winner surrounded by the falling silver dollars is so strikingly isolated from the sea of angry, betrayed upturned faces of the rest of the players in the casino.


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