In 1940-41 Jacob Lawrence created a sixty-panel narrative, The Migration series, based on the experience of his family and his community to communicate the struggle and perseverance of African Americans who, between 1900 and 1940, moved from the South to the North in search of a better life. In this POST, he shares the first panels and tags his friends who have helped him in his path.
The artist Augusta Savage was key in his life and her comment is based on her quote ”I have created nothing really beautiful, really lasting, but if I can inspire one of these youngsters to develop the talent I know they possess, then my monument will be in their work.”
Alan Locke was an American writer, philosopher, and patron of the arts. He introduced Lawrence’s work to art dealer Edith Halpert in June 1941. She gave Lawrence a show in November 1941, which received critical acclaim. He was the first African American artist to be represented by a downtown "mainstream" gallery and to enter into the both The Museum of Modern Art and The Phillips Collection.
Sources: Jacob Lawrence The Migration Series, 2015 I The Great Migration: An American Story , 1995 Story Painter: The Life of Jacob Lawrence, 1998 I MOMA.org
Jacob's story, 2019, Acrylic on canvas, 24" x 18" (61 x 46 cm)