Minnie Evans (American, 1892-1987), Untitled (central portrait), 1946/51/68
Minnie Evans is among the most highly regarded self-taught artists. Her elaborate painting on paperboard finished in 1968 was acquired in January 2011 during the High's annual Collectors' Evening event for the Museum’s folk art collection. Evans’s drawings were inspired by the dreams and visions that came to her night and day. She layered nature and spirit, plant and animal, human and divine in symmetrical compositions of swirling intricacy. The painting, an untitled work, is a collage comprising at least two earlier works: a drawing from 1946 and a mid-career drawing from 1951.
This painting is larger and more elaborate than any of the five Evans works already in the High’s collection. It is the first example of Evans’s most fully realized creations, in which she completely covered the surface with the arabesques, plant forms and mask-like faces typical of her designs. Evans’s work is featured in many museum collections including The Museum of Modern Art, the Art Institute of Chicago, the Smithsonian American Art Museum, the American Folk Art Museum, the Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Folk Art Center, the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Collection de l’Art Brut in Lausanne and the Newark Museum.