Artwork Information

  • Title:

    I Want You for U.S. Army

  • Artist:

    Flagg, James Montgomery

  • Artist Bio:

    American, 1877–1960

  • Date:

    about 1917

  • Medium:

    Color lithograph

  • Dimensions:

    39 7/8 x 29 7/8 inches

  • Credit Line:

    Wichita Art Museum, Museum purchase, Director's Discretionary Fund

  • Object Number:


  • Display:

    Not Currently on Display

About the Artwork

At the turn of the century, large scale posters were painted for use both as advertisement and as propaganda. This work titled “I Want You” by the noted illustrator James Montgomery Flagg, is perhaps the best-known poster ever produced in America and certainly one of the most effective propagandizing posters of all times. Flagg used his own face as the model for Uncle Sam here, but the powerful extended right hand pointing outward toward us derives from a British poster by Alfred Leete published several years earlier in London.

A poster is successful to the extent it attracts and thereafter holds attention. This work was one of the most successful and although designed for World War I recruitment, the image was revived and re-issued as a process printed poster at the opening of World War II.