The Douglas Archives

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Aaron Douglas Paintings Go to the Met and the National Gallery

For many American museums, the Harlem Renaissance painter Aaron Douglas (1898-1979) is an almost Vermeer-like figure, whose shadowy, graphically powerful depictions of African-American themes appear so rarely on the market that when canvases surface, curators pounce. And that is exactly what the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the National Gallery of Art in Washington did recently. Each institution has acquired one of his major paintings, which were sold by a private collector who had purchased them from Douglas himself the year before his death.


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