Exhibition | Sidney Dickinson and the Alabama Suite

Nov 12, 2014 — Sep 20, 2015

Sidney Dickinson (1890 – 1980) studied with William Merritt Chase and George Bridgman at the Art Students League, where he later taught for more than 25 years. He exhibited extensively throughout the Northeast and was an active member of the National Academy of Design, serving as a jury member for a number of years before becoming a full Academician in 1927.

Dickinson occasionally visited Calhoun, Alabama, where his parents worked with his maternal aunt, Charlotte Thorn, at the Calhoun Colored School. With guidance from Booker T. Washington, Thorn established the school in 1892. She served as principal for the private school where students were taught elementary academics and trained as teachers, farmers, cooks, and seamstresses. In addition to its educational function, the school served as a source of progressive action in the community: students and teachers taught basic literacy to older generations.

Over an extended time, Dickinson completed these paintings, some of which he later exhibited at the National Academy of Design and the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts.