DAM Hughie Lee-Smith Opening Reception
The Detroit Artists Market is proud to announce a special exhibition of works by Hughie Lee-Smith (1915-1999). “Hughie Lee-Smith” opens to the public on Friday, February 13, 2009 and runs through Saturday, February 28, 2009.
Please join us for the Public Reception on Friday, February 13th, 6-9 p.m.
A Gallery Talk is scheduled on Saturday, February 21, 2009, from 4-6 p.m.
Hughie Lee-Smith first showed at the Detroit Artists Market in a four-person show in 1947, and was a regular part of Market activity in the 1940s and 50s. He shaped his early career in Detroit, and earned the Detroit Institute of Arts Founders Prize in 1953. He was also locally known as a favorite art teacher, providing private lessons to area enthusiasts. Lee-Smith had a long, abiding relationship with the Detroit Artists Market, which was among the first venues to show African-American artists. He attributed his early success “….in large measure to the generous exposure given my paintings at The Detroit Artists Market.”
In the words of his stepdaughter, Karen Bowers, “Lee-Smith is largely famous for his surreal, melancholy depictions of desolation, alienation and urban decay. However, in the 60′s his work began to take on a more ominous tone, with stark and desolate landscapes; others with a mise en scene of tantalizing riddle reflected by the juxtaposition of objects and figures. In his portraiture, he possessed an uncanny ability to capture a typical facial expression which could well bespeak the imprint of the very essence of that person.” And the late Adolphus Ealey, renowned critic, sums it up: ”His canvases force you think. You cannot leave his work unaffected.”
Lee-Smith’s works are in many public collections including Howard University, the Detroit Institute of Arts, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and the National Museum of American Art. While the world continues to discover the beauty and mystery of his iconic figurative scenes as well as his drawings and the more abstract later works, “Hughie Lee-Smith’s family is fulfilling his wish to once again share his work with the Detroit community,” says Detroit Artists Market Director Nancy Sizer. “It is our privilege to welcome Hughie Lee-Smith’s art and legacy back to the Detroit Artists Market.”
Where: Detroit Artists Market, Detroit
Tix: Free admission