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Jim Crow Exhibit
2003-02-01

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The 'Jim Crow' years undoubtedly represent one of the most painful, oppressive periods in American history. But a recently discovered collection of paintings by a self-taught African-American artist epitomizes the tireless struggle, unyielding determination, and triumphant spirit of African-Americans who fought for dignity and equality during that era. As the primary component of a new traveling exhibition sponsored by New York Life Insurance Company entitled 'Rising Above Jim Crow: The Paintings of Johnnie Lee Gray,' the collection offers a personal vision of the strength and creativity of African-Americans throughout the final years of segregation. The exhibition will be in Chicago thru May 26, at the Chicago Historical Society, and showcases some 35 paintings by Gray.

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