Charles White was born in Illinois in 1918. He undertook artistic training at the Art Institute of Chicago and at the Art Students League in New York, and also spent some time at the Taller Grafica in Mexico. Though White enjoyed working in print and created the lithographs Portrait and Exodus II at Gemini Ltd in 1966, he is most widely recognised for his mural work, in particular the Hampton University mural The contribution of the negro to American democracy, painted in 1943.

As an African–American, much of White’s work was concerned with furthering the status of his people and questioning the racial divide in American society.
Emilie Owens
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Further information will be added to this site as the National Gallery proceeds with its research and documentation.

Last updated October 2014