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The Smoker, c. 1933


Henry Bannarn grew up in Minneapolis and attended the Minneapolis School of Art (now Minneapolis College of Art and Design). Active as a sculptor and painter, Bannarn was eager to share his talent with others. He taught at the Phyllis Wheatley House (now Phyllis Wheatley Community Center in Minneapolis) and later at the WPA-sponsored Harlem Art Workshop. The latter became a critical training ground for Black artists in New York, including Romare Bearden and Jacob Lawrence. This quickly made study of a person puffing away at a pipe shows his ability to capture atmosphere and personality.

The Smoker
Artist Life
H.11 x W.8-3/4 in.
Accession Number
The artist, Minneapolis; sold to MIA, 1944.
Curator Approved

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Copyright of the artist, artist's estate, or assignees