Harlem Renaissance Art

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The Era of Art The Harlem Renaissance is the birth of rich African American culture through art, music, and literature. It began in the early 1910’s into the mid 1930’s. Harlem is a neighborhood in New York which during that era turned into a predominately African American area. This started during World War I, and workers were recruited to the Northern states because manual labor workers were needed. Many brilliant African Americans of their time arose from the Harlem area such as Langston Hughes, Jacob Lawrence, and Palmer Hayden just to name a few. The spirit of the Harlem Renaissance is powerful and lively. African Americans had gone through extreme circumstances physically and emotionally to be able to get to places such as Harlem. One piece of artwork that depict the strenuous times they had would be Jacob Lawrence’s painting Dreams. Another piece of artwork that is quite moving would be Palmer Hayden’s painting Jeunesse. Additionally, An Idyll of the Deep South by Aaron Douglas was a significant piece of art that was during the Harlem Renaissance. The painting Dreams speaks volumes. Dreams was created in 1965, and was created by Jacob Lawrence. Jacob was born in New Jersey, and moved to Harlem at the age of thirteen. He became interested in art shortly after moving to Harlem. Once he was a teenager he attended classes at the Harlem Art Workshop. In the late 1930’s he received a scholarship to attend the American Artists School. Shortly After that he began a series of paintings known as The Migration Series. The most intricate piece of that series would be the painting Dreams. This painting can be depicted as surrealism. This painting is simple, yet it has such a powerful contrast between the bright yellow bars, and the dar... ... middle of paper ... ...located up north. Idyll of the Deep South has a similar representation in the sense that it was prior to the transformation to the north. That painting depicts the work they had to do. The main thing I noticed in the Idyll of the Deep south painting you see an orb of light centered in the photo going up which almost gives you a sense of hope for the future. Lastly, Jeunesse is relevant to the Harlem Renaissance because it represents the life the African Community built once they settled in Harlem. Jeunesse is my favorite piece of art from all of them because to me it represents the rainbow at the end of a storm. I never knew anything about the Harlem Renaissance or the art from that era before researching for this paper. The hardships that they went through, but ended in such a cultured and content place where everyone was embraced as themselves is quite inspiring.

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