AARON DOUGLAS (1899 - 1979) Head of Boy (Portrait of Langston Hughes).
Woodcut on cream laid paper, circa 1926. 120x102 mm; 4 3/4x4 inches, 1/4 to 3/4- inch margins. Signed, titled and dated "1957" in pencil, lower margin. A later printing by the artist at Fisk University.
This extremely scarce print is a striking representation of a hero of the Harlem Renaissance by Aaron Douglas, a small portrait of the poet Langston Hughes as a young man. Another impression, titled Portrait of Langston Hughes, an unsigned proof, printed in brown and gold metallic ink, is in the collection of the Philadelphia Museum of Art. The museum also has Portrait of Countee Cullen, another very similar Douglas woodcut. Both date from the same year as the artist's The Emporer Jones series of woodcuts. The artist later revisited these blocks, in addition to making new etchings like Window Shopper and The Junkman, after taking a printmaking class in the summer of 1955 taught by Walter Rogalksi at the Brookyln Museum Art School. Earle p. 221.