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An Archive for Virtual Harlem

Jessica Johnston, Author

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Harlem Renaissance Artist Lois Mailou Jones, 1905-1998

Lois Mailou Jones (1905-1998) was born in Boston, Massachusetts to Thomas Vreeland Jones and Carolyn Jones. She was a painter and held her first solo exhibition at the age of 17. She received her bachelor's degree from Howard University in 1945, graduating magna cum laude. Jones's numerous Haitian inspired oil and watercolor paintings are probably her most widely known work. Her work was abstract and hard-edged and her impressionist techniques gave way to a richly patterned and brilliantly colored style. She produced work that echoed her pride in her African roots and American ancestry. Jones felt her greatest gift to the art world was "proof of the talent of black artists" and her fondest wish was to be known as an "artist," without labels like "black artist" or "woman artist."

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