NEW YORK (AP) – The Metropolitan Museum of Art has received an epic 10-panel mural by realist painter Thomas Hart Benton depicting American life before the Depression.

“America Today” has been donated by AXA Equitable Life Insurance Company, which purchased it in 1984.

It was commissioned in 1930 for the boardroom of the New School for Social Research on West 12th Street.

The monumental mural is imbued with imagery of industrial America. It shows figures of farmers, coal miners, steelworkers and icons of modern industry and transportation.

It established Benton as a leading American muralist.

The Met plans to display it sometime in 2015.

LINK: See More Panels

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

Watch & Listen LIVE