Forgot your username or password?
Cover of the first (and
only) issue of FIRE!!, November 1926.
Douglas; Magazine reproduced by FIRE!! Press, Elizabeth, NJ
Original art for Spark
journal, 1934, which did not get beyond the planning stage.
Douglas. Schomburg Center collection.
Illustrator: Aaron Douglas
The Crisis, May
Douglas; Publisher: NAACP
Cover of Opportunity,
Illustrator: Aaron Douglas
Panel from Aspects of
Negro Life mural, 1934, created for the 135th Street branch of the
New York Public Library.
Artist: Aaron Douglas
Cover of Carl Van Vechten’s
Nigger Heaven, 1926.
Ilustrator: Aaron Douglas;
Publisher: University of Illinois Press
Aaron Douglas was a leading artist of the
also known as the New Negro Movement. Douglas—along with the
philosopher Alain Locke, whose important 1925 anthology The New
Negro featured Douglas's illustrations—helped set in motion a
new visual language detached from traditional European art training
and absorbing a distinctive African heritage. His style blended the
geometric and angular shapes of Art Deco with the linear rhythm of
Art Nouveau; it bore references to African masks and sculptural
figures, as well as allusions to African dance.
After graduating with a BFA in fine arts
from the University of
Nebraska in 1922, Douglas taught art at high schools in Nebraska
and Missouri. In 1924, he moved to New York, where he served for
two years as an apprentice to the German artist Winold Reiss, whom
he met through Charles S. Johnson, then editor of
Through his covers
for Opportunity and The Crisis
Douglas set forth a new vision for the black artist. His strong,
geometric forms and Egyptian profiles resulted in a style later
described by cultural critic and educator Richard Powell as
In 1926, he loaned his
talents to the first and only issue of
Wallace Thurman's magazine FIRE!! and later designed the
cover of Thurman's short-lived magazine Harlem.
Douglas became the most sought-after book
illustrator and cover
designer among the black writers of the time. Probably his most
controversial cover was for Carl Van Vechten's Nigger
Heaven, a book about Harlem nightlife. His illustrations for
James Weldon Johnson's epic poem God's Trombone, published
in 1927, made him especially popular. Rendered in a painterly
style, the plates formed an allegorical study of Negro experience
based on the spiritual songs of oppression and daily life.
Douglas frequented nightspots in Harlem to
soak up the black
urban scene and incorporate these expressions into his works. He is
known for superb murals that grace the walls of nightclubs and
cultural institutions. Among his best-known work is the series of
murals Aspects of Negro Life, created in 1934 for the 135th
Street branch of the New York Public Library, now called the
Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture.
In 1938, Douglas moved to Nashville,
Tennessee, to chair the art
department of Fisk University, a position he held until his
retirement in 1966. He passed away in Nashville in 1979.
Excerpt adapted from “Souls on
Fire,” Print magazine
(May/June 1998), with permission from the author.
1900–1940, Schomburg Center for Research on Black Culture, New
York Public Library.
Aaron Douglas: African
American Modernist, Spencer Museum of Art, University of
Just a simple idea to take advantage of the iPhone screen. Take a look!
Another competition is in the books! The Big One, Alaska's annual design show awards ceremony and exhibition, was Saturday, November 15 at The Boardroom. The event was truly statewide, with entries coming in from as far north as Barrow and far south as Nikiski.
Good design has the ability to define a great product, service or cause. AIGA member Sara N.A. Suttle shares some thoughts on why skimping on design is never, ever a good idea.
Section: Why Design
Eye Candy: Peter D. Cole, Sculptor
Posted by Ryland Quillen
5 days ago from
Lida Baday Spring 2010 Brochure
Concrete Design Communications, Inc.
5 hours 'til #GirlsHBO. Spend time with smart #design thinking. Complete set of #GAINconference videos are now live: http://t.co/u7gLkw6CId
An hour ago
Bard Graduate Center Identity
Flux 2014 Complete Winners List
January 22, 2015
Flux 2014 Winners Announced
January 14, 2015