Hughie Lee Smith

Hughie Lee Smith

by Leslie King-Hammond, Hughie Lee-Smith
     
 

Painter Hughie Lee-Smith (1915-1999) sought to transform his experiences growing up as an African American during the Great Depression into meditations on the human condition. In each of Lee-Smith's enigmatic compositions, barren landscapes, lone figures, and contrasting juxtapositions elicit many questions that lead the viewer to self-reflection. "I cannot begin

Overview

Painter Hughie Lee-Smith (1915-1999) sought to transform his experiences growing up as an African American during the Great Depression into meditations on the human condition. In each of Lee-Smith's enigmatic compositions, barren landscapes, lone figures, and contrasting juxtapositions elicit many questions that lead the viewer to self-reflection. "I cannot begin to project the meaning of my work in specific terms," Lee-Smith said, "for these paintings, at their best, are multi-faceted visual complexes whose many aspects are pregnant with as many disparate meanings as there are viewers."

Active in the art scenes of Cleveland, Detroit, and Chicago, Lee-Smith found inspiration in the New Negro Movement—Harlem Renaissance and nurtured his artistic talents early by participating in the Works Progress Administration/Federal Art Project. While he objected to strict definitions of "black art," his personal struggles with race identity, social justice, and alienation became recurring themes in his paintings throughout his career. At times a realist and at times a romantic, Hughie Lee-Smith captured the uncertainty of a generation caught between memories of the past and the promises of the future.

The eighth volume in Pomegranate's critically acclaimed David C. Driskell Series of African American Art, Hughie Lee-Smith presents nearly sixty color plates from the artist's profound oeuvre. Author Leslie King-Hammond considers the powerful experiences that shaped Lee-Smith's vision, while a comprehensive chronology by Aiden Faust further informs the context of the artist's work. With historical family photographs, excerpts from Lee-Smith's own writings, and an insightful forewordby David C. Driskell, Hughie Lee-Smith provides an intimate look at one of the twentieth century's most distinguished artists.

By Leslie King-Hammond. 124 pages with more than 65 color and black-and-white images, chronology, and index. Foreword by David C. Driskell and chronology by Aiden Faust. Size: 8.5 x 11 inches. Smyth-sewn casebound book with jacket.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780764953514
Publisher:
Pomegranate Communications, Inc.
Publication date:
03/31/2010
Pages:
124
Product dimensions:
8.80(w) x 11.20(h) x 0.80(d)

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