Nov 22, 2022

City Plevins

City Plevins

c. 1939

Dox Thrash

(American, 1892–1965)

Watercolor with graphite underdrawing on wove paper

Sheet: 39 x 29.7 cm (15 3/8 x 11 11/16 in.)

Severance and Greta Millikin Purchase Fund 2022.252


Did you know?

Dox Thrash inscribed the work’s enigmatic title on the sheet’s verso, perhaps suggesting the promise and opportunity offered by life in northern cities such as Philadelphia during the Great Migration.


For nearly half a century, Dox Thrash created evocative depictions of the everyday lives of Black Americans in Philadelphia, where he lived. This watercolor depicts apartment buildings in the north side of the city, where the artist’s own neighbors gather outside to work, play, and socialize. Thrash realistically depicted signs of wear, such as a falling shutter, but focused on the sense of community.

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