African Americans in the Visual Arts, Revised Edition by Steven Otfinoski

By Steven Otfinoski

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One of Burke’s finest sculptures is of an ordinary black man, simply called Jim. According to art critic Regina Holden Jennings, Jim “demonstrates her high level of skill in portraiture” with its strong, solid features and intense emotional depth. Among her other notable works are the dynamic Falling Angel and the tender, moving Mother and Child. From 1963, Burke taught at a number of prestigious colleges, including Haverford College in Haverford, Pennsylvania; Swarthmore College in Swarthmore, Pennsylvania; and Livingston College in Salisbury, North Carolina.

After high school, Blackburn studied at the Art Students League and with sculptor auGusta savaGe at her Harlem Community Art Center. Here he developed a strong interest in lithography, a method of producing an image on a flat prepared stone and taking ink impressions of the work. Part of his attraction to printmaking was that it provided a way to make original copies of an artwork and Bond, J. Max, Jr. sell them inexpensively to people who could not afford the high price of a one-of-a-kind drawing or painting.

Ananse: The Web of Life in Africa. Austin: The University of Texas Press, 1996. ———. John Biggers: My America: The 1940s and 1950s—Paintings, Sculpture and Drawings. New York: Michael Rosenfeld Gallery, 2004. Perry, Regenia A. Free Within Ourselves: AfricanAmerican Artists in the Collection of the National Museum of American Art. : Pomegranate Communications, 1992, pp. 36–39. Theisen, Olive Jensen, and John Biggers. A Life on Paper: The Drawings of John Thomas Biggers. Denton: University of North Texas Press, 2006.

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