Every Monday I search for inspirational quotes to help set the tone for my week. As a creative, I naturally turn to the words of artistic savants. In celebration of Black History Month, I’m keenly focused on the voices of black artists.
When you hear Picasso, Warhol, and Matisse, you instantly recognize their names. But what about Driskell, Gilliam, Green, Motley, Pippin (no not Scottie),Thomas, Walker ... I could go on.
In the 20th-century black artists had minimal visibility, even greats like Jacob Lawrence. In frequent acquisitions, few collectors, limited scholarships and token exhibitions was an underlining brushstroke in the career of a black artist. We're just now seeing museums embrace black artists in a more prominent and meaningful way then ever before.
Black artists have power messages to share, not just to their communities, but to our society at large, like the below selection of some my favorite inspirational quotes.
"If a man knows nothing but hard times, he will paint them, for he must be true to himself."Horace Pippin, Painter
"I’d always been afraid of art. I was afraid in college. But that fear is a goal, in a way: It makes you hesitate, and then you delay your start, and then you have a breakthrough.” Sam Gilliam, Painter
"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."— Augusta Savage, Sculptor