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William Johnson

 (1901 - 1970)
William Henry Johnson was active/lived in District Of Columbia, South Carolina / Denmark, Norway.  William Johnson is known for naive genre, figure, still life painting, serigraphs, drawing.

Biography   William Johnson


Known for distinctive modernist images of African American life, William Johnson died destitute and deranged from syphilis, having spent the last twenty-three years of his life in the Central Islip Sate Hospital on Long Island.  He stopped painting in 1956.

One of his chief sponsors and exhibitors for his art was the New York Harmon Foundation, which, in 1929, presented him the "Award for Distinguished Achievements Among Negroes in the Fine Arts Field." Most of his work was handed over to the Harmon Foundation, now defunct, by a court that deemed his works without value.  In turn the Foundation donated the work to the Smithsonian Institution, which had a retrospective of his work in 1970.

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Museums (10):  William Johnson    


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