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  • <i>Brer Rabbit Goes Back to Mr. Man's Garden</i>, Illustration for <i>The Tales of Uncle Remus</i>, 1987

    Brer Rabbit Goes Back to Mr. Man's Garden, Illustration for The Tales of Uncle Remus, 1987

    Watercolor and pencil on paper
    Collection of the artist
    ©1987 Jerry Pinkney Studio. All rights reserved.

    In 1987, Jerry Pinkney was invited to illustrate The Tales of Uncle Remus, retold by American author, educator, and musician Julius Lester. He was enthusiastic about the opportunity but also understood the book's controversial nature. Here Pinkney illustrates the moment when the clever and mischievous Brer Rabbit is caught in the gardener's trap after stealing his vegetables. Pinkney's illustrations capture the spirit of the collection of short stories, leaving the stereotypical behind.

    Jerry Pinkney, From Bondage to Freedom (Escape at Night), 1996
    From Bondage to Freedom (Escape at Night), Cover illustration for The
    Underground Railroad National Park Handbook
    , Jerry Pinkney, 1996.
    ©1996 Jerry Pinkney Studio. All rights reserved.

    Witness: The Art of Jerry Pinkney, organized by the Norman Rockwell Museum in Stockbridge, Massachusetts, touches on themes such as the African-American experience, the wonders of classic literature and the wisdom in well-loved folk tales. The works in the exhibition celebrate small, extraordinary moments, as well as significant historical events, reflecting the artist's belief in the transformative power of visual storytelling.

    Pinkney's beautiful paintings are created from pencil, colored pencil, pen and ink, and watercolor. His style is distinctive: his scenes are known for their vibrancy of color, finely crafted detail, and realistic portrayal of their characters. His sensitivity and talent in this medium have provided him the opportunity to illustrate over one hundred children's books. His work has helped to advance multicultural and African-American themes in the world of children's literature.

    Whether recreating history or breathing new life into classic tales, his art is always about much more than just the appearance of things. Witness: The Art of Jerry Pinkney explores this gifted creator's legacy through powerful images that offer insights into where we have been, who we are, and who we might become.

    Organization & Support
    This exhibition was organized by the Norman Rockwell Museum in Stockbridge, Massachusetts.

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