Art Scene: Jacob Lawrence

African-American painter Jacob Lawrence has been a favorite of mine since I was first captivated by his Migration Series, part of which is right here in D.C. at the Phillips Collection(the other half as at the MOMA). His work provide such an amazing view of African-American history and showcases the major talents that were able to shine through despite layers and layers of injustice.

I was recently at the Phillips Collection again and sat down to explore of book of his work and that is when I discovered that not only had he spent some time in Nigeria, he also had a few paintings and drawings from that period in his life. These images above capture the beauty and chaos of African marketplaces that almost leave me nostalgic. Of his time in Nigeria, Lawrence would say the following:

"I became so excited then by al the new visual forms I found in Nigeria = unusual color combinations, textures, shapes, and the dramatic effect of light - that I felt an overwhelming desire to come back as soon as possible to steep myself in Nigerian culture so that my paintings, if I'm fortunate, might show the influence of the great African artistic tradition."

No comments: