The Life of Toussaint L'Ouverture

The Opener

(American, 1917–2000)
Sheet: 47.6 x 73 cm (18 3/4 x 28 3/4 in.)
© The Jacob and Gwendolyn Knight Lawrence Foundation, Seattle / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York
Location: not on view
This artwork is known to be under copyright.

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Did You Know?

Jacob Lawrence reinterpreted a series of paintings to make these prints, changing their forms, composition, colors, and scale—a process that he described as “another creative step.”


These prints reinterpret a series of paintings that African American artist Jacob Lawrence made about Toussaint L’Ouverture, a Haitian revolutionary. Born into slavery, L’Ouverture led an uprising that freed Haiti from European rule. After hearing the story as a young man and being struck that it had been omitted from his formal education, Lawrence began to paint episodes from L’Ouverture’s biography, using bright colors and simple forms to evoke its drama.
The Opener

The Opener


Jacob Lawrence, Lou Stovall Workshop, Inc., Amistad Research Center

(American, 1917–2000)
America, 20th century

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