Strange Fruit Among Southern Magnolias Analysis

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Strange Fruit Among Southern Mary Lovelace O’Neal Painting Like A Man, Chapter 1, “Strange Fruit Among Southern Magnolias” (Excerpt) David Driskell and Howard University's Art Faculty Howard’s art faculty was also prominent but traditional and had a long appreciation in realistic renderings. They were conservative approach to painting and training artists to become teachers. O’Neal took a watercolor course from Lois Mailou Jones who O'Neal maintains hated her work. Jones had been recruited to Howard in 1930 from Palmer Memorial Institute in North Carolina where she had formed the department there. At Howard she taught design and watercolor painting. O’Neal admits, “I was taking her class and a theatre class and it became very clear to me that I didn’t want to major in theatre because you had to depend on too many other people. Talk about prima donnas, they were there by the thousands—everyone was a great star” and even though O’Neal admits that she enjoyed her art classes more than theater, she said that Jones disliked her work because it was muddy. (O'Neal, 2009) Speaking about her experiences in Lois Jones’ classes with amusement she says: “She’d take us out into Rock Creek Park in the snow—she’d have us in eighteen feet of snow painting scenes of Haiti and none of us knew what the f__k Haiti was.” (O'Neal, 2008) Haiti was important to Jones—she had met her husband, the well-known Haitian painter Louis Vergniaud Pierre-Noel in 1934 when they were graduate students at Columbia University. It would be almost twenty years …show more content…

I had recently joined the Art Department faculty at Howard University and appeared for the first session of a class in painting that I was scheduled to teach. Shy and somewhat bashful, the “little Negro girl from Mississippi with the Afro,” as Lois Mailou Jones described her—an unusual appearance for a Howard University student in those days….

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