DuMouchelles
Live Auction

The February 2022 Auctions: Day 2

Fri, Feb 25, 2022 11:00AM EST
Lot 1002

AARON DOUGLAS (AMERICAN, 1899–1979) SET OF 4 WOODCUTS ON CREAM JAPAN PAPER, 1926 (IMP. 1972) EMPEROR JONES

Estimate: $10,000 - $15,000

Bid Increments

Price Bid Increment
$0 $5
$30 $10
$100 $25
$400 $50
$900 $100
$2,000 $250
$5,000 $500
$10,000 $1,000
$20,000 $2,500
$50,000 $5,000
Each signed, titled, dated 1972, inscribed "Imp." and numbered 3/20 in pencil, lower margin. Each superb, rich impressions of these scarce prints. Titles Include: Bravado; Defiance; Flight; Surrender. It is estimated that the artist printed approximately 100 impressions - a small edition of prints at the time of the publication, three later editions of 15, 15, and 20 each and occasional printings outside the edition. Aaron Douglas was a fixture of the Harlem Renaissance, the African American movement in literature, art and culture in the 1920s. Douglas was originally commissioned by Theatre Arts Monthly to design a series of woodblock illustrations for the Eugene O'Neill play Emperor Jones in 1926. Eugene O'Neill, selected Charles Gilpin, the first African American actor to act in a Broadway play, to star in his leading role of Brutus Jones in his Emperor Jones play in 1920 and later hired the renowned, African American actor and vocalist, Paul Robeson, to play in the same leading role. Paul Robeson also starred in the film adaptation of the play. Provenance: Gift to Current Owner from her Godmother, Dr. Naomi Long Madgett, Poet Laureate of Detroit. Dr. Madgett formerly sat on a panel in 1972 at Fisk University in Nashville, Tennessee. These prints were a gift from the artist, Aaron Douglas, he formerly worked as an Art Professor at Fisk University. Frame H 18.5" W 37.75"