Phoebe Beasley (b. 1943)

Phoebe Beasley, Textured Threads, 2004, collage on canvas, 24 x 36 inches, signed lower left

In her book, Art: African American Samella Lewis said Phoebe Beasley “incorporates paint, tissue paper, cloth, and a variety of found objects to create compositions that express experiences in the lives of her special people-people of ordinary means whose daily activities often go unnoticed.” Lewis also used one of Beasley’s collages on the cover of that book.

In 1998 Beasley collaborated with Dr. Maya Angelou to produce a series of serigraphs interpreting several poems by Langston Hughes. The result was a stunning and poignant collection available in two formats, a limited edtion bound version and a limited edition unbound version.

Phoebe Beasley is the only artist to twice receive the official Presidential Seal on her artwork, once in 1989 by President George Bush and again in 1993 by President Bill Clinton.

Originally from Cleveland, Ohio, Beasley earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from Ohio University. Later, she moved to Los Angeles, where she has resided for over 40 years.

Beasley’s work is in the collections of Oprah Winfrey; Clarence and Jacqui Avant; Anita Baker; Keenan Ivory Wayans; LaTanya Richardson and Samuel L. Jackson; the Schomberg Center for Research in Black Culture, New York City; the Gillette Company; and the California African American Museum, among others.