Abstract Vertical Form.
Oil, brush and ink on cream wove paper, 1960. 1050x660 mm; 39 1/2x26 inches. Signed and dated in pencil, lower margin.
The painter and sculptor Norman Lewis is considered the first African-American Abstract-Expressionist artist. Born in Harlem and taught by the Harlem Renaissance sculptor Augusta Savage, Lewis began his career in the 1930s as a social-realist painter. In 1955, Lewis received the Carnegie International Award in Painting, making him the first African-American artist to receive this prestigious prize. In 1963, Lewis was a founding member of the Spiral Group, and in 1969, along with Romare Bearden and Ernest Crichlow, founded Cinque Gallery, a downtown gallery dedicated to emerging minority artists.