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Billy Lee: Portrait in Tar
Providing History Paintings an African American Voice

Reimaging Traditions

Celebrating Heroes

Who do we honor with art?


Artists of color have an extensive tradition of creating portraits and images to honor famous African Americans from history. Instead of reshaping or inserting African Americans into the broad story of American history, these artists have commemorated specific individuals for their distinctive accomplishments. While some of these African Americans were not celebrated during their lifetimes, artists have helped assert their place in history.

In More Depth
Kerry James Marshall
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