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The Migration Series, Panel no. 31: The migrants found improved housing when they arrived north.

Jacob Lawrence ( between 1940 and 1941 )

On View

Three high rise apartments, one grey, one dark brown and one rust colored with many colors of windows.
  • Location House (1600) - Display, Dining Room
  • Period Twentieth-Century
  • Materials Casein tempera on hardboard
  • Object Number 1167
  • Dimensions 12 x 18 in.; 30.48 x 45.72 cm.
  • Credit Line Acquired 1942; © 2022 The Jacob and Gwendolyn Knight Lawrence Foundation, Seattle / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Jacob Lawrence, October 1993, transcript in The Phillips Collection Archives:

“This represents my interpretation of the urban community. My first consciousness of my physical environment came about when we made the move from Philadelphia to New York. I was 13 years of age, and I was seeing what I call tall buildings, many of them, and tall to me meant six stories high, tenements, fire escapes, and just blocks and blocks of geometric shapes. And I don’t think I ever got over that feeling, that it wasn’t a shock. It was a revelation. It was like a dance, like a musical composition that appeared over and over and over again, and this is my response to the migrants facing the big urban community.”

Screenshot of Jacob Lawrence microsite

Learn more about Jacob Lawrence’s Migration Series

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