Enamel pin inspired by The Toiler, c. 1935, by Aaron Douglas.
Aaron Douglas is remembered as one of the most influential visual artists of the Harlem Renaissance, who used stylized aspects of African and African-American folk imagery to address social and racial issues in his art. When Douglas first arrived in New York City, key Harlem Renaissance figures like Alain Locke encouraged him to explore the aesthetics of traditional African art and motifs, which resulted in his signature style of strong lines and silhouetted figures. In The Toiler, a single man in silhouette works out in a field, depicted only through the juxtaposition of curved lines in the foreground with a row of single-story houses. This graphic backdrop is dominated by the man, who takes up most of the composition. He looks up into the sun’s rays, which emanate out to him in Douglas’s signature concentric circles.
Manufactured by Pin Museum, measures 1.63 x 1.2 inches. Single posted.
© 2021 Heirs of Aaron Douglas / Licensed by VAGA at Artists Rights Society (ARS), NY