Monday, April 6, 2015


The Great Migration, hundreds left for Northern Cities
Never were the images more telling and never was the story so compelling than Jacob Lawrence's gripping images in his Migration Series and other Visions of the Great Movement North by America's rural South to the urban North.  One-Way Ticket which opened at MoMA, the Museum of Modern Art, runs through Sept.7, 2015. It offers a rare opportunity to see all the 60 panels of Jacob Lawrence's Migration Series--- special programs, film exhibitions, digital resources and publications explore the legacy and influence of the Great Migration on American culture and society.

One Way Ticket to Northern Cities during WWI
ONE-WAY TICKET offers visitors Lawrence's celebrated series in its entirety revealing how hundreds of of thousands of African-Americans left the rural South for the industrial North in search of jobs, homes and respect. While the exhibition's focus is on Lawrence's Migration series, it  includes much more to stimulate the mind with novels and poems by writers such as Langston Hughes, Claude McKay and Richard Wright. Other sections, dedicated to music, explore the integration of Southern sounds into music performed for Northern audiences and feature video and audio recordings of performances by Marian Anderson, Duke Ellington, Billie Holiday, and others. Digital platforms allow visitors to page through historical books immediately related to Lawrence's work. Take time to listen to the audio and video recordings of 10 poets reading their contributions to the Migration Series Poetry Suite.
THE MIGRATION RESEARCH Lawrence completed his landmark series of 60 small tempera paintings with captions in 1941, when he was just 23 years old. A child of immigrants himself and a resident of Harlem since the age of 13, Lawrence's views as an artist were shaped by his background. He spent months at the 135th Street branch of the New York Public Library (now the Schomburg Center for Research in Black culture) studying historical documents, photographs and journals and other printer material related to the Great Migration. The show in essence is meant to celebrate the centennial of the migration, which started  during World War I.  Even earlier the artist had been hailed as a prodigy by the Harlem cultural
The Laboring Immigrants in the City
establishment.  THE GALLERY STORYBOARD As you stand in the gallery the images seemingly wrap around the walls in a storyboard manner. On separate pieces of paper Lawrence wrote captions for each image, a format he learned from magazines and that provides a lively narrative.
HARLEM TOURS In Mid-April MoMA will launch a self-guided walking tour, available from the exhibition's website, which explores key Harlem monuments and institutions of the 1930s and 1940s, the era during which Jacob Lawrence began his career as an artist. The tour includes stops with artworks related to the exhibition that can not only be seen at their locations in Harlem, such as Aaron Douglas's mural cycle at the Schomburg Center for Research and his mural at the YMCA at 135th Street, and Charles Alston's recently restored murals at the Harlem Hospital. The tour introduces audiences to Harlem's sights and sounds, and experiences that helped to shape Lawrence's views as an artist.
Ta Ta darlings!!! Jacob Makes a World: Jacob Lawrence, a Young Artist in Harlem, a new children'a book, by writer Sharifa Rhodes-Pitts is available at MoMA stores or online through Fan mail welcome at Visit Polly's Blogs on and in the left-hand column click on any one of the Blogs from fashion, to visionary men, women determined to succeed and poetry.

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