Art/ Collection/ Art Object

Pool Parlor

Artist:
Jacob Lawrence (American, Atlantic City, New Jersey 1917–2000 Seattle, Washington)
Date:
1942
Medium:
Watercolor and gouache on paper
Dimensions:
31 1/8 x 22 7/8 in. (79.1 x 58.1 cm)
Classification:
Drawings
Credit Line:
Arthur Hoppock Hearn Fund, 1942
Accession Number:
42.167
Rights and Reproduction:
© 2015 The Jacob and Gwendolyn Lawrence Foundation, Seattle / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York
On view at The Met Breuer on Floor 3
In 1942, twenty-five-year-old Lawrence gained national recognition when the Museum of Modern Art, New York, and the Phillips Collection, Washington, D.C., shared the acquisition of his sixty-panel Migration of the Negro series and sent it on a fifteen-venue tour across the United States. Later that year, the Metropolitan Museum purchased its first work by the artist, Pool Parlor, a prizewinner in "The Artists for Victory" competition. Painted with Lawrence’s characteristic flat forms, angular lines, and a vibrant palette, the work depicts a Harlem pool hall. Men in exaggerated poses, dramatic contrasts of light and dark, and the zigzag of cigarette smoke all contribute to the lively scene.
Inscription: Signed and dated (lower right): J. Lawrence 42
the artist, New York (sold in 1942 to MMA)

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Artists for Victory: An Exhibition of Contemporary American Art," December 7, 1942–February 22, 1943, unnumbered cat. (p. 17; awarded a Sixth Prize).

Boston. Institute of Modern Art. "Four Modern American Painters: Peter Blume, Stuart Davis, Marsden Hartley, Jacob Lawrence," March 2–April 1, 1945, no. 43 (as "The Pool Parlor").

New York. Whitney Museum of American Art. "Jacob Lawrence," May 16–July 7, 1974, no. 82.

Saint Louis Art Museum. "Jacob Lawrence," August 1–September 1, 1974, no. 82.

Birmingham Museum of Art. "Jacob Lawrence," September 23–October 23, 1974, no. 82.

Seattle Art Museum. "Jacob Lawrence," November 15–December 15, 1974, no. 82.

Kansas City, Mo. Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art. "Jacob Lawrence," January 6–February 6, 1975, no. 82.

New Orleans Museum of Art. "Jacob Lawrence," February 27–March 27, 1975, no. 82.

Brooklyn. Bedford-Stuyvesant Restoration Corporation. "Selected Works by Black Artists from the Collection of The Metropolitan Museum of Art," April 14–June 14, 1976, unnumbered cat.

Albany. New York State Senate. "Twelve Americans from the Metropolitan Museum of Art," May 5–June 20, 1980, unnumbered cat. (p. 17).

Bronx Museum of the Arts. "The Artist Celebrates New York: Selected Paintings from The Metropolitan Museum of Art," February 2–March 24, 1985, unnum. brochure.

Long Island University, Brooklyn Campus. "The Artist Celebrates New York: Selected Paintings from The Metropolitan Museum of Art," April 17–June 2, 1985, unnum. brochure.

Queens. Jamaica Arts Center. "The Artist Celebrates New York: Selected Paintings from The Metropolitan Museum of Art," June 15–July 27, 1985, unnum. brochure.

Staten Island Museum. "The Artist Celebrates New York: Selected Paintings from The Metropolitan Museum of Art," September 8–October 20, 1985, unnum. brochure.

New York. City College of New York. "The Artist Celebrates New York: Selected Paintings from The Metropolitan Museum of Art," October 25–December 13, 1985, unnum. brochure.

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "It All Begins With a Dot: Exploring Lines in 20th-Century Art," April 13–December 31, 1988.

New York. Midtown Payson Galleries, Inc. "Jacob Lawrence, an Overview: Paintings from 1936–1994," January 12–February 25, 1995, unnumbered cat. (p. 5).

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "City Life: Around the Eight," August 22, 2000–January 14, 2001, no catalogue.

Washington, D. C. Phillips Collection. "Over the Line: The Art and Life of Jacob Lawrence," May 26–August 19, 2001, no. 29.

New York. Whitney Museum of American Art. "Over the Line: The Art and Life of Jacob Lawrence," November 8, 2001–February 3, 2002, no. 29.

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "African-American Artists, 1929–1945: Prints, Drawings, and Paintings in The Metropolitan Museum of Art," January 15–May 4, 2003, extended to July 6, 2003, no. 41.

A. Hyatt Mayor. Artists for Victory: An Exhibition of Contemporary American Art. A Picture Book of the Prize Winners. New York, 1942, unpaginated, ill.

Henry Geldzahler. Twelve Americans from the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Exh. cat., New York State Senate, Albany. New York, 1980, pp. 16–17, ill.

Ellen Harkins Wheat. Jacob Lawrence: American Painter. Exh. cat., Seattle Art Museum. Seattle, 1986, p. 66, pl. 25.

James A. Porter. Modern Negro Art. (1st ed., 1943). Washington, D. C., 1992, p. 267, ill.

Peter T. Nesbett and Michelle DuBois. Jacob Lawrence: Paintings, Drawings, and Murals (1935–1999). A Catalogue Raisonné. Seattle, 2000, p. 67, no. P42-13, ill. (color).



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