Archibald J. Motley, Jr.

Chicago painter Archibald J. Motley Jr. (1891-1981), often depicted contemporary black social life in the city. His focus was Chicago's "Black Belt", an area that by the 1930s was home to more than 90 percent of the city's black population. He had a fascination with African American culture that included the everyday lives of people as well as the more elusive qualities of their music and movement. He traveled and studied in Paris as a Guggenheim Fellow in 1929 and returned to the states to paint scenes of nightlife and gambling during Prohibition. His career spanned over 50 years, leaving behind a beautiful and unique record of African American life on Chicago's south side.
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