Kermit Oliver ( American, 1943 )

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General Description

Although Kermit Oliver earned high praise during his early career in 1970s Houston, the experience left him feeling like an outsider due to the racial divide between himself and his patrons. He moved to Waco, Texas, in 1984 and continues to avoid the spotlight despite numerous honors: his work was installed in the recently opened National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, DC; he was named the Texas State Two-Dimensional Artist for 2017; and he designed seventeen scarves for the famed French fashion house Hermès. Oliver describes his art as “painted collages,” and this self-portrait illustrates the way he arranges animals, plants, figures, and architecture into singular images.

Excerpt from

  • Emily Schiller, Label text, Center for Creative Connections, 2018.

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