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The Art of Mort Künstler / Original Paintings / /

The focus of numerous one-man shows at major museums and galleries across the country, Mort Künstler's original paintings offer us the opportunity to appreciate both America's history, as well as the rare talents of one of its great artists. For information about purchasing one of these works of art, contact or call 516.624.2830 Monday through Friday, 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

Constitution Debated - Original Painting

Gouache, 16" x 14"
Date painted: 1985

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Historical Information

The Articles of Confederation served as the first constitution for the thirteen original states in the United States. But within a few years it had become obvious that they could not secure a lasting foundation for stable government. In February 1787, Congress called for a new convention of the states to meet in Philadelphia in May and "render the constitution of the Federal Government adequate to the exigencies of the Union." The convention opened on May 25, and the delegates promptly elected the imperturbable George Washington to preside over the proceedings. But he played little active role in the debates. Instead, James Madison of Virginia took the lead in advocating a proposal for a strong central government, as outlined in the Virginia Plan, which he had drafted.

Debate began and continued through the summer. Opponents of the Virginia Plan proposed an alternate New Jersey Plan, advocated by delegate William Paterson of that state, which would have severely limited federal powers. The arguments were sometimes polite and often bitter, but always creative. "Never was an assembly of men, charged with a great & arduous trust," wrote Madison, "who were more pure in their motives, or more exclusively or anxiously devoted…to the object of devising and proposing a constitutional system which would…best secure the permanent liberty and happiness of their country."

Date Created: 1985

Medium: Gouache

Image Size: 12-1/2" x 14"

Signature Location: lower right

If you would like pricing or more information regarding the purchase of an original painting, please contact us at or (516) 624-2830.


All illustrations by Mort Künstler. Text by Michael Aubrecht, Dee Brown, Henry Steele Commager, Rod Gragg, Mort Künstler, Edward Lengel, James McPherson, and James I. Robertson, Jr. - Copyright © 2001-2017. All Rights Reserved. No part of the contents of this web site may be reproduced or utilized in any form by any means without written consent of the artist.