Art Bridges in NPR's Art Where You're At

Henry Owassa Tanner at the Dallas Museum of Art

Henry Ossawa Tanner

Art Where You’re At (NPR)

When he was 11 years old, Henry Ossawa Tanner spotted a man painting in a Philadelphia park. The boy decided he wanted to paint, too. His parents gave him 15 cents, and he bought — his words — “dry colors and a couple of scraggy brushes.” Eventually he became the first African American artist with an international reputation.

Tanner’s Christ and his Mother Studying the Scriptures and The Thankful Poor are on view at the Dallas Museum of Art through early January. Conservation work was done on both, and X-rays and infrared photography revealed surprises and insights into the artist’s thought process. Both paintings are presented in conjunction with the Art Bridges Foundation.

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Published September 8, 2021