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Masked Forest

Gouache and mixed media on paper
22 x 16 7/8 inches
1999
Now on view: TJC Gallery, Spartanburg, South Carolina

This artwork offers us a vibrant, abstract representation of a forest, alive with color and bursting with the energy of nature. Driskell has arranged a vast ecosystem, the exact organisms unknown, but balanced in harmony. Masked Forest reflects the essence of his own journey as an artist, scholar, and curator—from his upbringing in an Appalachian sharecropping family, where he frugally learned to work with mere scraps of paper, to his formative travels to Africa. Driskell’s eclectic, resilient, and resourceful creativity mirrors these same qualities in the South itself.