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Sunflowers by Walter H. Williams, Amer., (1920-1998)
Regular price $1,200
Color Woodcut, 1958, printed 1960, first state Ed. of 200, a second state without the black butterfly top center was published in 1966, 22-1/2 x 28-1/2, signed, titled and annotated Artist's Proof in pencil, on cream wove japan paper. African American Artist Walter Williams, (1920-1998), captures the innocence and earthy beauty of childhood on a rural southern farm. His prints often show a solitary child, outdoors in a field, their only playmate a butterfly, rooster or as here, his trademark sunflowers. Occasionally there is a ramschackle outbuilding in the background, or an abandoned plow. The colors are mostly bright and cheerful in William's prints, even ecstatic as here, and though tempered by the poverty shown, their beauty rings true. I find them eloquent and touching, and this just the third or fourth in to pass through my hands in 30 years. Williams work was just gaining attention in the mid 1960's when he moved to Denmark to escape the prejudice and discrimination he faced as a black artist in circa 1965 America. With the revival of interest in work by earlier Afro American artists, his work has reached a new audience today. The print itself is in fine condition, the margins have suffered abuse by an inept framer, the side margins present but split with nail holes, tears and losses mostly just outside left and right image edges where folded back for a too small frame, top and lower margin with tape stains at edges well outside subject, printing creases by the red sun upper left, the image fine, with bright vivid color in a beautiful impression. Despite the marginal issues, this is one of Williams's very best prints, and priced accordingly so the collector may have the margins professionally restored if desirable.