The study of American art has historically and consistently been enriched by museum and gallery exhibition catalogues. Lot 182 and catalogues of similar and comparable content enriches and fill a substantial gap in the history of 20th-century American art. Careful study of these catalogues, as a genre, many written by scholars in the field, position the Black artist firmly in his time. This is accomplished through the use of primary source materials that place these artists in a social and historical context. These richly informative catalogues provide extensive biographical information; chronologies of works, often relevant to historical settings; and images and informative statements of the art work included. Oftentimes, they may be the only print materials on a given artist.
Until Swann Auction Galleries has its next Printed and Manuscript African-Americana Sale, I will continue to search the secondary market for these small gems of African American art history.