Genesis Creation Sermon III: And God Said Let the Earth Bring Forth the Grass, Trees, Fruits, and Herbs
Based on biblical texts and his own memory of the Sunday sermons of the Rev. Adam Clayton Powell Sr. at the Abyssinian Baptist Church in Harlem, New York, Jacob Lawrence's "Genesis Creation Sermon" series delivers a richly personal interpretation. Inspired by realism and details of iconography, Lawrence's "Genesis Creation Sermon" series also reveals his interest in references from art history. The bright colors and expressive, monumental preacher figure that stands central in each work reflect the artist's affinity for action and resonance given in the sermon. The gestural movements of the preacher figure engage the viewer in the immediate foreground while also leading to a middle ground containing parish members watching in awe. In the background, four arched windows exhibit an exterior scene beyond the church that encompasses the theme of each "Genesis Creation" panel. Together, the "Genesis Creation Sermon" series depicts a unique narrative universally celebrated and one that is unique to American art.
The Walter O. Evans Collection of African American Art
One of the most important collections of African American visual art dating from the 18th century to the present, the collection includes 62 works from Edward Bannister, Romare Bearden, Elizabeth Catlett, Robert S. Duncanson, Richard Hunt, Jacob Lawrence and others. This collection forms the foundation of a multidisciplinary center for the study, understanding and appreciation of African American art and culture. Items from the collection have previously rotated in the Evans Center Gallery and through unique exhibitions such as the 2012 "Life's Link: A Fred Wilson Installation," and the 2017 travelling exhibition of Jacob Lawrence's work.