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Horace Pippin notebooks and letters, circa 1920

Pippin, Horace, 1888-1946

Painter

The notebooks and letters of Horace Pippin in the Archives of American Art were digitized in 2006. The papers have been scanned in their entirety, and total 114 images.

Funding for the processing and digitization of this collection was provided by the Terra Foundation for American Art

Collection Information

Size: 0.2 Linear feet

Summary: The collection measures 0.2 linear feet and consists of three notebooks, notebook fragments, and two letters created by African American primitive painter Horace Pippin. The notebooks recount Pippin's World War I experiences, including his being wounded. One of the notebooks is illustrated.

Biographical/Historical Note

Born in West Chester, Pa., in 1888 Pippin was a self-taught primitive painter. His fighting experiences in France during World War I greatly influenced his later paintings. During the war, he was wounded and lost the use of his right arm. When painting, he had to use his left hand to guide his right. He gained a national reputation as a "true American primitive" in the 1940s, when his bold narrative paintings of childhood memories, war experiences, heroes, African American genre scenes, and religious subjects were widely exhibited, including his famous painting of the hanging of John Brown. Pippin died in 1946.

Provenance

Horace Pippin's war memiors/notebooks and one letter were purchased from Robert Carlen, Pippin's dealer, in 1956. The 1943 letter from Pippin to Carlen was donated by Dr. and Mrs. Matthew Moore in 1983.

Funding

Funding for the processing and digitization of this collection was provided by the Terra Foundation for American Art