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African Odalisque

Lithograph on paper
Support size: 17 3/8 x 12 7/8 inches; Image size: 15 x 11 inches
1984
Now on view: TJC Gallery, Spartanburg, South Carolina

As exhibited in: Beyond the Illustration, TJC Gallery, Spartanburg, South Carolina, 2024

Burroughs was a successful artist, poet, political activist, and educator. She explored various media, including sculpture and painting, but was most prolific as a printmaker drawn to themes of family, community, and history. Though especially inspired by the black experience, she also sought to depict universal scenes that sometimes intentionally blur the racialized characteristics of her subjects’ faces. As Burroughs put it, “I wish my art to speak not only for my people but for all humanity.” Her experience as a children’s book author—including her poetry collection, What Shall I Tell My Children Who Are Black?—also impacted her thematic choices.

Other works by this artist