John Brown Going to His Hanging by Horace Pippin, 1942. Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, Philadelphia, John Lambert Fund.
Although his reputation as an artist of consequence has never faltered, Horace Pippin, who was widely exhibited in the 1940s when he was championed by Albert Barnes among other luminaries, has not had a major exhibition in more than two decades. The Brandywine River Museum of Art has now remedied that neglect with an impressively broad show of some sixty works by Pippin that display his impressive range and distinctive style. Portraits, landscapes, domestic scenes, and bold political ones make up an extensive body of work for an artist who fought with the Harlem Hell Fighters in World War I, worked a series of jobs having nothing to do with the making of art, and died at age fifty-eight. Catalogue contributions by contemporary scholars should serve to reinterpret Pippin and give him his place in the galaxy of contemporary American and African American art.
Horace Pippin: The Way I See It • Brandywine River Museum of Art, Chadds Ford, Pennsylvania • April 25 to July 19 • brandywine museum.org