Jacob Lawrence

Jacob Lawrence (1917-2000) was born in Atlantic City and came of age in Harlem during
the Great Depression. During the 1930s, Lawrence received early artistic
training under Charles Alston at the Utopia Children’s Center in Harlem,
and the Harlem Art Workshops at 135th Street Public Library and 306 West
141st Street, which were run by Augusta Savage. Inspired by everyday life
in Harlem and the history of African-Americans in the United States,
Lawrence developed a distinctive style of narrative painting featuring a
flattened picture plane and boldly colored figures. In 1937, Lawrence
began a narrative suite based on the life of the Haitian leader Toussaint
L’Ouverture. He would eventually go on to create nine narrative series
based on African-American life and heroes, including the now-famous
series, “Migration of the Negro”.


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