Jacob Lawrence is one of the 20th Century’s most celebrated American painters, known for a colorful modernist style he called “dynamic cubism” that was inspired by the shapes and textures of Harlem. Working in this mode, he created his masterpiece, The Migration Series, a group of 60 panels in tempera and gouache depicting scenes from the lives of Black Americans as millions of families left the South from about 1910 to 1970 for greater opportunity in the North.

Lawrence, who first came to Yaddo in 1954, directly addressed racial and social injustice in his work, exploring the African American experience in a society marred by segregation and inequality.

We’re delighted to celebrate his experience at Yaddo and to carry his legacy forward in support of BIPOC artists.

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Collectively, Yaddo artists have won 82 Pulitzer Prizes, 34 MacArthur Fellowships, 71 National Book Awards and a Nobel Prize in Literature. Learn more about the impact of Yaddo.

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