Helen LaFrance (Kentucky, b. 1919) oil on panel painting depicting an African-American congregation outside of a church, sheltered behind several large trees, with figures gathering around a white cloth covered table laden with food in the background. Other figures, arriving from automobiles, in the foreground. Signed lower right. Housed in a gilt and black painted wooden frame with linen rabbet edge. Sight – 15 3/4" H x 32" W. Framed – 20 3/4" H x 37 1/4" W. American, late 20th century. Provenance: Private Nashville, TN collection. Biography: Self-taught African American artist Helen LaFrance was born on a Kentucky farm and began painting in her 40s. She is known for her "memory paintings", drawn from her recollections of life growing up in the rural South. Several museums and private collectors, including Oprah Winfrey, own examples of her work. Now nearly 100 years old, she resides in a Kentucky nursing home. (source: "Helen LaFrance Folk Art Memories" by Kathy Moses). Alternate spelling: Helen La France. CONDITION: Overall good condition with areas of cracquelure, natural imperfections to wood panel. Stains to linen rabbet edge.
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