William H. Johnson. Children. 1941

William H. Johnson Children 1941

  • Not on view

At the age of seventeen, Johnson moved from South Carolina, his birthplace, to New York City, where he studied at the National Academy of Design. He then traveled to Europe and North Africa, during which time he largely painted expressionist landscapes. In 1938, with the threat of World War II looming, Johnson returned to the United States. He settled in Harlem, where he immersed himself in the community, which resulted in a pronounced shift in both the subject matter and style of his work. Johnson began depicting scenes of everyday African American life in Harlem and in the South, using flat compositions and vibrant colors, as can be seen in Children.

Gallery label from Studio Visit: Selected Gifts from Agnes Gund, 2018
Medium
Oil and pencil on wood panel
Dimensions
17 1/2 × 12 1/2" (44.5 × 31.8 cm)
Credit
Gift of Abby Aldrich Rockefeller (by exchange), Agnes Gund, Marlene Hess and James D. Zirin, and the Hudgins Family
Object number
6.2016
Department
Painting and Sculpture

If you would like to reproduce an image of a work of art in MoMA’s collection, or an image of a MoMA publication or archival material (including installation views, checklists, and press releases), please contact Art Resource (publication in North America) or Scala Archives (publication in all other geographic locations).

All requests to license audio or video footage produced by MoMA should be addressed to Scala Archives at firenze@scalarchives.com. Motion picture film stills or motion picture footage from films in MoMA's Film Collection cannot be licensed by MoMA/Scala. For licensing motion picture film footage it is advised to apply directly to the copyright holders. For access to motion picture film stills please contact the Film Study Center. More information is also available about the film collection and the Circulating Film and Video Library.

If you would like to reproduce text from a MoMA publication or moma.org, please email text_permissions@moma.org. If you would like to publish text from MoMA’s archival materials, please fill out this permission form and send to archives@moma.org.

This record is a work in progress. If you have additional information or spotted an error, please send feedback to digital@moma.org.