Primitive painting depicting three sailboats in the foreground, and figures sitting around tables and standing on a lawn in the middle ground, with two houses in the background.
The Famous Picnic at Val Kil documents the racially integrated picnic at which President Franklin Roosevelt and his wife, Eleanor, entertained the King and Queen of England at their estate in Hyde Park, New York on a Sunday afternoon on June 11, 1939. Many believed the Roosevelt administration introduced equal opportunities for minorities, and for many the picnic at Val Kil symbolizes the beginning of equal rights. As an African American woman living during the Roosevelt presidency, Anne Murfee Allen undoubtedly found particular significance in the event at Val Kil.
A bulbous vessel with a narrow base and wide mouth that is flanged. The vessel is made up of small, glued pieces of wood that are then turned, creating an intricate pattern in the wood's fine, finished surface. The predominate decorations are bands of diamonds and triangles that run around the widest point of the vessel and beneath the flanged mouth.
Large wood vessel with rings of Native American-inspired design patterns
This vessel was made first by gluing together small pieces of different woods and then turning the entire piece, leaving the pattern created by the pieces of wood in the finished surface. Allen was influenced by the Native American pottery of the Southwest and tried to reproduce its forms and decorative motifs in wood.
ON RECTO. Text painted in white, starting at bottom left corner and proceeding clockwise around the edge of work: DO YOU JUST STUFF FOOD iN YOUR MOUTH AND NEVER SAY THANK YOU LORD NOW + Text painted in white, running left to right along bottom edge: PROPHET WU BLACKMON. DUMB GREETY DOES NIVER EET ENOUGTH.
Face mask with stylized face and horns of an antelope and open jaws of a leopard. Forehead has three sets of scarifcation marks in relief; hairline is incised with pigmented linear and geometric patterns; striped horns curve naturally from top of head; eyes are set in ovoid grounds of white kaolin; top of snout shows incised V-shaped marks; mask is predominantly brown with traces of green, red and yellow pigment; chew stick in back shows some wear.
Zamble is a mythical creature who usually appears with his beautiful wife, Gu, and his brutish and rambunctious brother, Zauli. In Guro thought, this ensemble possesses great power to detect harm, settle disputes, and to negotiate between the worlds of the wilderness and the village. They dance only at the most important festivals or at funerals of family members who were entrusted with their care. Zamble is a composite creature comprised of the fine facial features of a gazelle and the jaws of the leopard, a fitting visual metaphor for the grace and power of the male youth and vigor he is meant to evoke.
ON RECTO. Signed in paint, lower right corner: 'BY THE LIGHT / OF THE MOON' PJ91 + ON VERSO. Inscribed on frame backing in black marker: _ PJ1991 + Affixed on back, top left: Eldred Wheeler business card
A bulbous vessel with narrow mouth and base. The wood is burned and cracked and circled by three gold bands, two of which overlap.
burnt wood vessel with gold
A turned wood vessel that addresses relationships and time--togetherness, loss, and death. The loose ring of gold represents the artist's wife, from whom the artist separated before her death. The two overlapping rings represent the artist and his daughter.