Tuesday, February 09, 2010

"Blind Singer," William H. Johnson

Blind Singer
Originally uploaded by Smithsonian Institution

[Visual description: An art print depicting two stylized figures, male and female, with dark skin; the man's eyes are closed, the woman's are open; the man holds a tambourine and the woman a guitar; both are dressed in the style of the 1930s, but the colors of their clothing are unusually bright]

The Smithsonian's latest batch of uploads to the Flickr Commons project is a collection of prints by William H. Johnson (1901-1970), an African-American artist who experienced mental illness and was institutionalized for the last twenty-three years of his life. The image above, "Blind Singer," is typical of his work c.1940--two-dimensional figures, bright colors, and depictions of everyday scenes. The National Museum of American Art holds over a thousand works by Johnson.

1 comment:

Effie said...

Thank you so much for the post, Penny. I didn't know that about Johnson.