Jacob Lawrence Migration Series at the SAM

March 27, 2017

So the Jacob Lawrence Migration series has been reunited again, this time at the Seattle Art Museum.  If you've taken any art history classes in college, you've seen various images of at least a couple of pieces from this body of work.  It is always fun to see familiar work such as these in person...especially all of them.

One thing I typically like to look at with famous work such as this is the presentation and framing.  Is it the original frame from the artist, or has the museum conserved it and framed it again?  In this case these are in their original state, very plain understated pine or fir wood frames that may have even been done by the artist.  The frames are not particularly impressive and that is what I love about them.  What puts them over the top for me is that many of them (but not all) have numbers painted on them which must correspond perhaps to their original showing. Of course the train image is one of the more famous from the series.  This is panel 5 of the total of 60.

I don't believe that I've seen this particular image before. The caption by Lawrence is, "The crops were left to dry and rot. There was no one to tend them.". This is panel 13.

 This is panel 1, " During World War I there was a great migration north by southern African Americans (1940–41)"

The exhibition is well attended, but not a ridiculous wait yet.  It is up until April 23rd, so I'd guess the las eek will be  hectic, so see it soon!

 

Here's a link to the SAM site for the exhibition.

 

Here's a link to the Phillips Collection with an image of each painting in the series.

 

 

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