James Henry Moser (1854-1913)

9 03 2017

Winold Reiss (1886-1953)

10 02 2017

Saints of Jazz

9 05 2016

Saints Cover for Smashwords

Download Saints of Jazz

Billie Holiday (April 7, 1915 – July 17, 1959)

With a knife. At her throat. He keeps hitting me. What can I do? Keep waiting for something to fall. Something to stop. Always another blow. Apologies and booze. Thank the dear Lord. When he’s had enough.

Floor boards creaking. With wind and with wear. Trousers slung over an easy chair. Spread those legs, girl! Was all that she heard. Didn’t care. That she was ten years old. Someone should have been there. Someone should have heard. That wretched curse and those ugly words.

And the soot would pour down her throat. From the bastards in brown trousers. Given a pillow. In The House of the Good Shepherd. Where Jesus kissed the dust off her face. Didn’t stop that itch in the night. That lament. That cry.

American pianist Alexander Kelberine. Programmed his last recital with pieces. In minor keys and melodic funereal lines. He then went home. And took. An overdose of sleeping pills. Made Billie laugh. Put the bottle of wine back on the shelf. And wondered if he had worn. His best suit. Then wrote a song. On some postcards. Of southern trees. And strange exotic fruit.


Henry Taylor

23 02 2016

Keith Mallett

27 01 2016


Frank Morrison

19 11 2015

Frank Morrison

Kara Walker

9 10 2015

Kara Walker


Archibald Motley

4 10 2015

Archibald Motley

HolyRollersArchibald J. Motley Jr., <em>Hot Rhythm</em>, 1961. Oil on canvas, 40 x 48.375 inches (101.6 x 122.9 cm). Collection of Mara Motley, MD, and Valerie Gerrard Browne. Image courtesy of the Chicago History Museum, Chicago, Illinois. © Valerie Gerrard Browne.thepicnicArchibald J. Motley Jr., <em>Barbecue</em>, c. 1934. Oil on canvas, 39 x 44 inches (99.1 x 111.76 cm). Collection of the Howard University Gallery of Art, Washington, DC. © Valerie Gerrard Browne.Archibald J. Motley Jr., <em>Brown Girl After the Bath</em>, 1931. Oil on canvas, 48.25 x 36 inches (122.6 x 91.4 cm). Collection of the Columbus Museum of Art, Ohio. Gift of an anonymous donor, 2007.015. © Valerie Gerrard Browne.

Aaron Douglas

3 10 2015


William H. Johnson

17 07 2015

William Henry Johnson (March 18, 1901–January 1, 1970) was an African-American painter born in Florence, South Carolina. He became a student at the National Academy of Design in New York.[1] His style evolved from realism to expressionism to a powerful folk style for which he is best known.

Johnson was born March 18, 1901 in Florence, South Carolina, to Henry Johnson and Alice Smoot.[2] He attended the first public school in Florence, the all-black Wilson School on Athens Street. One of his teachers, Louise Fordham Holmes, included art in her curriculum. Johnson also copied the comic strips in the newspapers.[3]

He moved from Florence, South Carolina, to New York City at the age of 17. Working a variety of jobs, he saved enough money to pay for classes at the prestigious National Academy of Design.[4] He worked with the painter Charles Webster Hawthorne, who raised funds that allowed Johnson to go abroad to study.[2]

He spent the late 1920s in France, where he learned about modernism.[5] During this time, he met the Danish textile artist Holcha Krake in Cagnes-sur-Me. In 1941, Johnson held a solo exhibition at Alma Reed Galleries.[2] However, although he enjoyed a degree of success as an artist during the 1940s and 1950s, he was never able to achieve financial stability. In 1942 a fire destroyed his studio, his artwork and his supplies.[2] In 1944 his wife Holcha died from breast cancer. To deal with his grief, he took work in a Navy Yard, and in 1946 left for Denmark to be with his wife’s family. Johnson soon fell ill himself, from the effects of advanced syphilis. He returned to New York in 1947 to enter the Central Islip State Hospital on Long Island, where he was treated for syphilis-induced paresis.[9] He spent the last twenty-three years of his life there.[4] He stopped painting in 1956[10] and died on January 1, 1970.