“Genesis” Series by Jacob Lawrence

September 2—October 6, 2020

Jacob Lawrence, (1917-2000), No. 8 Creation was done--and all was well, from the “Genesis” series, 1989, silkscreen. © Jacob Lawrence, courtesy of Landau Traveling Exhibitions.

Based on biblical texts and his own memory of the Sunday sermons of the Rev. Adam Clayton Powell, Sr. at the Abyssinian Baptist Church in Harlem, New York, Jacob Lawrence’s “Genesis” series provides a richly personal interpretation. The bright colors and the expressive, monumental preacher figure that stands central in each work reflect the artist’s affinity for action and resonance given in the sermon. Inspired by realism and details of iconography, these silkscreen prints also reveal Lawrence’s interest in references from art history and, together with a universally celebrated narrative, provides an important voice to American art and artists.

About the Artist
Since his first published print in 1963, Jacob Lawrence (1917—2000) produced a body of prints that is both highly dramatic and intensely personal. In his graphic work, as in his paintings, Lawrence has turned to the lessons of history and his own experience. From depictions of civil rights confrontations to scenes of daily life, these images present a vision of a common struggle toward unity and equality, and a universal struggle deeply seated in the depths of the human consciousness.

The works are on loan courtesy of the collection of Alitash Kebede of Los Angeles, CA. The exhibition and museum tour are organized by Landau Traveling Exhibitions of Los Angeles, CA.

“Jacob Lawrence: Three Series of Prints: Genesis—Toussaint L’Ouverture—Hiroshima” is made possible through the generosity of the Maryland State Arts Council and the Mitchell Gallery Board of Advisors.

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Programs and Events

September 2Online opening of exhibition
Jacob Lawrence, “Genesis” series

September 9–October 6: Online Lecture
Lecture on the “Genesis” series by Art Educator Lucinda Edinberg.
Prerecorded lecture. Premieres September 9, available through October 6.

Jeff Landau

October 2: Interview with Jeff Landau, 7:30 p.m.
A live interview with Jeff Landau, director of Landau Traveling Exhibitions, titled, “From Coast to Coast: Exhibitions on the Road.” This event will provide the backstory on the work and creativity involved in curating a traveling exhibition, shipping logistics, venue reviews and schedules, and all the particulars involved in getting the show on the road. Moderated by Art Educator Lucinda Edinberg. A short Q&A period will be held after the interview.

Mitchell Gallery members only event.
Gallery members will receive an email with the event link 24 hours prior to the lecture-interview. Make sure we have your current email address. To update your information, contact us at mitchell.gallery(at)sjc.edu.