Walter Sanford, also known as Sanford, (30 January 1912 – 3 July 1987), was an American artist who spent almost every day of his adult life painting in Chicago and Detroit. He was one of the first and only black social realism and abstract expressionist artists of the 20th century.
He was heralded “Black Picasso” and “Detroit’s Picasso” for his cubist figure paintings and in 1958 he won the Prix de Paris La Grande Saison de Paris at the Raymond Duncan Galleries. He opened the first black-owned art gallery and exhibited at the first Negro Art Exhibition and Negro History Week in Detroit. Sanford was hailed as one of Michigan’s foremost modern art painters in 1952.
Sanford was part of the Secon
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