Jacob Lawrence: The Migration Series

Jan 21, 2017 - Apr 23, 2017Seattle Art Museum, Seattle

In celebration of the 100th anniversary of the birth of one of this city’s most beloved artists, Jacob Lawrence, the Seattle Art Museum presents Jacob Lawrence: The Migration Series.

Among the outstanding American painters of the early and mid-20th Century enriching the halls of great museums, Jacob Lawrence’s have always stood out. Each canvas surges with movement as anonymous but richly rendered figures move in unison to destinations we know, as Lawrence navigates between urban and rural settings with ease. The artist spent his last years in the Pacific Northwest, where the Migration series, 60 panels based on African Americans’ passage from the rural South to the urban-centric North, painted while the artist was just in his early 20s, will make a homecoming of sorts. “The Migration Series is a revelatory monument of early modern American art,” Patricia Junker, Ann M. Barwick Curator of American Art tells us. “Now is an extraordinary moment to return to it—the themes of social justice it explores are timeless. It would be wonderful if it could be seen in every American city at this moment. We feel lucky to have this opportunity to celebrate Lawrence’s legacy here in his adoptive city of Seattle.”