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David C. Driskell's Students


David C. Driskell’s Students features works by students of David C. Driskell, whose teaching career spanned over five decades and ended in 1998 with his retirement from the University of Maryland, College Park, as a Professor Emeritus of Art. The exhibition is part of the David C. Driskell Center’s yearlong program honoring the life and achievements of Professor David C. Driskell, who passed away on April 1st 2020 at the age of 88. Driskell, an artist, scholar and collector, was first and foremost a teacher and mentor.

His teaching career began as early as 1955, when he was appointed as an Assistant Professor of Art at Talladega College, Ala. He held subsequent teaching positions at Howard University, Washington, DC; Fisk University, Nashville, Tenn.; and University of Maryland, College Park, from which he retired in 1998 as Professor Emeritus.
For additional details, please visit this webpage.

The works in this exhibition vary in style, subject matter, and choice of medium. The artworks span abstract and representational works; landscape, fantasies, and figurative pieces; works with social and political messages; and paintings, mixed media, drawings, prints and assemblies. Moreover, in addition to sharing David C. Driskell as a teacher, more than anything else, the artists share their love, appreciation, and admiration for Driskell, both as a friend and a mentor.

The exhibition was originally designed to be installed in the David C. Driskell Gallery on the University of Maryland, College Park campus; however, it was decided to exist as a virtual exhibition only. Therefore, it was loosely curated by the David C. Driskell Center team, who decided to exhibit up to three works by each of the artists that responded to the call to submit their works for this exhibition. Each artist has a devoted section with a biography, images, and often a few sentences about the artist’s recollections of Driskell as a teacher, mentor, and friend.

Navigation Instructions: This exhibition organizes artists alphabetically. To learn about each artist, click on the artist’s name. In most cases, the artist's memories of Professor David C. Driskell will appear first. Scroll down to see 'View Album of Artwork Here.' Clicking on it will lead to a Flickr page with an artist's artwork, information, and often the artist's reason for selecting the piece. To return to the main exhibition page, simply close the Flickr window.

Disclaimer: Biographical information has been provided by the artists or the David C. Driskell Center. Artists provided images of their artwork and captions. The artists’ rationale for selecting each work, as well as their memories of Professor David C. Driskell, are presented in the artists’ own words.

Driskell's Students

In This Section

Driskell teaching Methods and Materials at UMD around table (503)

Click through the following tabs to learn about the following artists: 

  • Terry Adkins
  • Michael Atkins
  • Jeremy Austin
  • Arthur Bacon
Driskell teaching 'Methods and Materials' at the
University of Maryland, College Park (1995). 
Photograph is part of The David C. Driskell Papers.
Gift of Prof. and Mrs. David C. Driskell.

Terry Adkins

Terry Adkins Remembering David Driskell

Terry Adkins studied with David C. Driskell at Fisk University, Nashville, Tenn., from which Adkins graduated in 1975.


Selected Works: View Album of Artwork Here

Garvey’s Ghost, woodcut (1973)

Untitled, lithograph and etching (1997)

Untitled #1, collage (1986)


About Terry Adkins

Known as the “sculptor of music,” Terry Adkins (1953-2014) incorporated his love and knowledge of music into the conceptual approach to his art work. He correlated aspects found in art, such as color and texture, to elements that define music, such as sound and rhythm. Adkins graduated from Fisk University, Nashville, Tenn. in 1975 with a B.S. in printmaking, from Illinois State University, Normal, Ill., in 1977 with a M.S. in printmaking, and he received his M.F.A. in sculpture from University of Kentucky, Lexington, Ky., in 1979. Adkins gained inspiration for some of his exhibitions, or as he referred to them, “recitals,” from individuals who made a difference in the political, social, and pop cultural world that had not received the amount of credit they deserved. He derived ideas from biographies of figures ranging from Jimi Hendrix and Sojourner Truth to George Washington Carver and Yves Klein. The artist generally used repurposed materials, blown glass, cloth, and wood in his sculptures, creating an assemblage of forgotten and neglected items. He had a unique style of combining many forms of art, including visual art, spoken-word performance, video and live music, which had a way of stimulating all of the senses within one installation. Adkins intended to “find a way to make music as physical as sculpture might be, and sculpture as ethereal as music is.” Adkins’ work provokes a conversation around aesthetics, philosophy, history, and culture, specifically African American culture.

Terry Adkins presented solo museum exhibitions at The Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, N.Y. (1995); Sculpture Center, New York, N.Y. (1997); Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia, Pa. (1999); the Bronx-River Art Center, New York, N.Y. (2005); and most recently at the Tang Museum, Saratoga Springs, N.Y. (2012). His work is included in the public collections of The Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington D.C.; The High Museum of Art, Atlanta, Ga.; Studio Museum in Harlem, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, and The Museum of Modern Art, New York, N.Y.; and most recently, The Tate Collection, London, United Kingdom.

Michael Atkins

Michael Atkins Remembering David Driskell

“Is it possible to have any more accolades to bestow upon the brilliant and inspiring David C. Driskell? I would like to thank Professor Driskell for his beneficence of knowledge, unselfishness, altruism, kindness, humanitarianism, and most of all for his mentorship and enduring friendship. He made an indelible impact on my life that I will forever be beholden. When I look up into the sky I will think about his wonderful stories and anecdotes etched in my mind. This will put a broad smile on my face because the memories will last the rest of my life.”


Selected Works: View Album of Artwork Here

F.I.T. Expressions, photograph (n.d.)

Tina, Ikettes, Ike, photograph (n.d.)

We See You Kehinde, photograph (n.d.)


About Michael Atkins

Born: Grand Rapids, Michigan
Bachelor of Science Fisk University
Master of Fine Arts New York University

Jeremy Austin

Jeremy Austin Remembering David C. Driskell

"I first met Dr. Driskell when I was an undergraduate at the University of Maryland. I was one of only six students who took his Methods and Materials course in the Fall of 1995. In the course we studied traditional Old Master techniques and we ground our own pigments from clays, made our own drawing inks from black walnuts and pokeberries, made egg tempera formulas and even painted small frescos! This training would continue when I became Dr. Driskell’s teaching assistant, studio assistant and apprentice. He introduced me to the work and techniques of artists like Milton Avery, Romare Bearden, Alex Katz, and others.

We often shared and discussed one another’s work and on one particular day I showed up at his studio with a group of collages he hadn’t yet seen. A few were quite Driskell-esque. He looked them all over and immediately singled out one piece of a reclining female nude and told me, “This! This is the direction you need to pursue.” He then asked if I would like to trade him for one of his works because he would like mine for his own collection. Of course, I enthusiastically accepted!

Driskell then shared a story with me about an experience he had at one of his exhibition openings when Romare Bearden pulled him aside to give him similar guidance and direction. Bearden, an important mentor to Driskell, was flattered by Driskell’s collage in the show entitled Homage to Romare Bearden, but pointed out that it wasn’t Driskell’s voice. Bearden then led him over to a small, semi-abstract, watercolor landscape and told him that this painting was the most successful in the show, completely surprising Driskell, and that he wanted to buy the piece. He said he was reminded of this, not only because of the advice he had just given me, but also because the small, abstract, mixed media collage I chose in trade reminded him so very much of the painting Romare Bearden had selected to purchase from the opening."


Selected Works: View Album of Artwork Here

Untitled (Nude), collage and mixed media on paper (n.d.)


About Jeremy Austin

Jeremy Austin is a Virginia-based artist whose work has been exhibited both nationally and internationally. He attended the University of Maryland, College Park, where he studied art and met and studied with David C. Driskell. His collaged mixed media paintings are mainly figurative and characterized by simplified forms, stylized subjects, and flat planes of color. Austin’s selected awards and artist residencies include the Robert M. MacNamara Foundation, Haystack Mountain School of Craft, the Mint Museum of Art, and the McColl Center for Art + Innovation, among others.

Arthur Bacon

Selected Works: View Album of Artwork Here

The Residents of Gritney Corner, enamel on wood (n.d.)


About Arthur Bacon

Arthur Bacon had two competing interests throughout high school and as he went on to study at Talladega College, Al. Though he majored in biology in college, he still enrolled in art courses taught by David C. Driskell. His strong performance in his classes earned him the College’s Armstrong Award for Creative Ability. He continued his studies in graduate school at Howard University, Washington, D.C., where he received his M.S. and Ph.D. in 1963 and 1967, respectively. After a year of being the first Black postdoctoral researcher at the University of Miami, Fla., he became a science administrator and also resumed painting and exhibiting his work. Bacon’s return to art won him second prize in his first professional art competition, where he also sold thirty of his works. Since then, he has exhibited in many cities including Atlanta, Ga.; New York, N.Y.; Birmingham, Al.; and Washington, D.C.

Bacon is now retired from Talladega College and was recently named Professor Emeritus of Natural Sciences and Humanities. He is painting more than ever and occasionally writes and recites poetry.

Bacon characterizes himself first and foremost as a minimalist. His early work was done mainly in ink wash, simple lines, and without much color, mostly because he believed that color conflicted with the emotional expression of a piece. Now later in his life, he utilizes more color, techniques and other media, and sometimes a combination of all of these. Despite this newfound openness to color and other techniques, lines and a limited color palette still resonate in his work.

In This Section

Driskell teaching watercolors at Fisk University

Click through the following tabs to learn about the following artists: 

  • Pati Beachley
  • Tim Beard
  • Michael Borders
  • Gloria Brown Simmons





Driskell giving a watercolor demonstration at Fisk University (1967). 
Photograph is part of The David C. Driskell Papers.
Gift of Prof. and Mrs. David C. Driskell. 

Pati Beachley

Selected Works: View Album of Artwork Here

Mother, cast aluminum carpet, cast yarn and wood (2018)

Passing, cast aluminum rope with lipstick finish (2018)

Tender, cast aluminum rope with lipstick finish (2017)


About Pati Beachley

Pati Beachley is a Professor of Art and Chair of the Art & Design Department at Seton Hill University, Greensburg, Pennsylvania. She studied at the Lacoste School of Art, Lacoste, France, and received her B.A. in studio art from the University of Maryland, College Park in 1992 where she studied with Professors David C. Driskell, Anne Truitt, and John Ruppert. She received her M.F.A. in sculpture from the Virginia Commonwealth University in 1996.

Beachley exhibits her work actively in Pennsylvania, Ohio, New York, Washington, D.C., Virginia, Maryland, and Tennessee. She has had multiple solo shows, national shows, and has been featured in curated and juried exhibitions. Her studio and foundry is in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, where she casts all her own metalwork. She contributes volunteer service to the larger arts community in Pittsburgh by serving on multiple boards of arts organizations. She is a member of the Pittsburgh Society of Sculptors and the Associated Artists of Pittsburgh.

Tim Beard

Tim Beard Remembering David Driskell

“I was David Driskell's first (or one of the first) teaching assistant at University of Maryland in 1977. I started work on my M.F.A. in the fall of 1975, and received my M.F.A. in May 1977. I recall what a pleasure it was to work with Mr. Driskell in that capacity, and the experience was so helpful in my future years as a college art instructor. It would be an honor to be included in the Spring 2021 exhibition, even though technically I wasn't his student.”


Selected Works: View Album of Artwork Here

Folk Forms, oil on canvas (2016)

Mirror Mirror, oil on canvas (2015)

Persuasive Percussion, oil on canvas (2015)


About Tim Beard

Tim Beard received an M.F.A. from the University of Maryland in 1977, studying with Professors David C. Driskell, Martin Puryear, Anne Truitt and William Willis. He taught briefly at the University of Maryland, College Park and Prince George's Community College, Largo, Md. until 1984. He has lived and worked in Washington, D.C., New York, New Mexico, and currently lives in San Antonio, Texas.

Beard has exhibited in solo and group shows in Washington, D.C., New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Italy.

Michael Borders

Selected Works: View Album of Artwork Here

Genesis of the Capital City, mural study, oil on linen canvas (1973)

Persecution and Imperialism, oil on canvas (1973)

The Connecticut Industry Mural Composition, sepia giclee on paper (2002)


About Michael Borders

Michael Borders is a muralist, illustrator, painter of formal portraits and the producer of a long line of original ideas for institutions and individuals. He received his B.A. from Fisk University, Nashville, Tenn., in 1968, where he majored in art with a minor in mathematics. He earned his M.F.A. from Howard University, Washington, D.C., in 1970; he also studied at Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, Maine, in 1969.

His images have been seen on buildings, on albums and compact discs, in book illustrations, coloring books and posters, and living rooms, as well as in nightclubs, cafeterias, elementary schools, universities and churches. He has lectured at Fisk University as well as Trinity College and the University of Hartford, both in Hartford, Conn. His works were first exhibited at the Fine Arts Exhibition at Fisk University in 1968 while Prof. Driskell was Professor of Art and Chairman of the Department of Art.

Gloria Brown Simmons

Selected Works: View Album of Artwork Here

A Chinese Paper Cup, mixed media (1969)

Cloud Study, computer graphics print (1986)

Kepesian Moment, one print from one screen of a six station installation (2006)


About Gloria Brown Simmons

Gloria Brown-Simmons is currently teaching interstellar mission design at Rutgers, New Brunswick, N.J., and a professor of astronomy at Monmouth University, West Long Branch, N.J. She received her B.A. from Fisk University, Nashville, Tenn. and her M.F.A. from the University of California, Los Angeles. She also earned her M.S.V.S. at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Center for Advanced Visual Studies, Boston, Mass., where she was also a fellow.

With her background in visual art, Brown-Simmons now works to help people ‘see’ and interpret geophysical and planetary data. She developed her methods of integrating arts and sciences at national research centers and private corporations; and as a collaborator for research projects at national universities. She has lectured on this approach internationally including the Doors of Perception, Amsterdam, the Netherlands; the Banff Center, Alberta, Canada; Invenção, Sao Paulo, Brazil; the New York Academy of Sciences; and Edutainment, Hangzhou, China. Her work has been exhibited internationally including Ars Electronica, Linz, Austria; and on broadcast television.

In This Section

Driskell teaching printmaking at haystack Mountain School of Crafts

Click through the following tabs to learn about the following artists: 

  • Matthew Clay-Robison
  • Emily S. Conover
  • T.J. Dedeaux-Norris
  • Janice Darden Frame
Driskell teaching a workshop on printmaking
at Haystack Mountain School of Crafts (1998).
Photograph is part of The David C. Driskell Papers.
Gift of Prof. and Mrs. David C. Driskell.

Matthew Clay-Robison

Selected Works: View Album of Artwork Here

Four Weeks in October, woodcut (2003)

Police Brutality, 4th of July (Walter Pierce Park, DC), woodcut (2003)

White, Hot Rage (Homegrown Demagogue), woodcut (2016)


About Matthew Clay-Robison

Matthew Clay-Robison is Gallery Director at York College of Pennsylvania. He received his B.F.A. from the University of Connecticut and M.F.A. from the University of Maryland, College Park, where he studied with Prof. Driskell and assisted him at his studio in Hyattsville, Md.

Clay-Robison is also an artist, focused mainly on addressing issues of social justice through printmaking. His work has been featured in solo and group exhibitions throughout the United States and internationally. His prints belong to several public and private collections including the Library of Congress, Washington, D.C., the Prof. David C. Driskell Collection, and the Dr. Robert E. and Jean Steele Collection. Clay-Robison was awarded Creative York’s 2017 Educator of the Year for bringing challenging, thought-provoking exhibitions by internationally renowned artists to York, Pa. He lectures regularly on his work as a curator and artist, most recently at the 2019 College Art Association Conference in New York City. As a 2020 Fulbright U.S. Scholar, Clay-Robinson will serve as Curator-in-Residence at the Indonesia Art Institute of Yogyakarta.

Emily S. Conover

Emily Conover Remembering David Driskell

“I was privileged to study under thoughtful direction of Professor David C. Driskell as an undergraduate as well as a graduate student at the University of Maryland. David was an influential artist, mentor and scholar; he inspired my exploration of mixed media, social commentary and other forms of art making. I was honored to receive the David C. Driskell Award in 1999, given annually to an outstanding graduating MFA student in the Department of Art. David became a good friend and a supportive colleague throughout my continuing career as an artist and professor in the Department of Art.”


Selected Works: View Album of Artwork Here

Brooklyn Pier RX, acrylic and mixed media on panel (2015)

Collapse #3, acrylic and mixed media on panel (2018)

Remnants #1, charcoal and acrylic on paper mounted on panel (1999)


About Emily Conover

Emily S. Conover received a B.S. degree from Purdue University, West Lafayette, Ind., and a B.A. and an M.F.A. with a concentration in painting and drawing from the Department of Art at the University of Maryland, College Park, where she studied with Professor Driskell. She has been teaching painting and drawing at the University of Maryland since 1999.

Ms. Conover has participated in exhibitions in the metro Washington, D.C., area as well as in Belgium, Los Angeles, Calif., and New York City and Long Island City, N.Y. Most notable among these exhibitions are Shtik Fleisch Mit Tzvei Eigen at the FotoMuseum in Antwerp, Belgium, curated by Adam Broomberg and Oliver Chanarin; Translation, curated by Annie Gawlak at Arts 901 in Washington, D.C.; and Seeing Red: A Juried Exhibition, curated by Sam Gilliam at Arts/Harmony Hall, Fort Washington, Md. She was selected as one of ten Washington, D.C. area artists for the exhibition New Talent at Rockville Arts Place. She received the juror’s award for her entry in the traveling exhibition Drawing and Redefining Drawing: Invitations and Selections by Manon Cleary sponsored by the Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission.

T.J. Dedeaux-Norris

Selected Works: View Album of Artwork Here

Kindred, fabric and stuffing (2019)

Pass Rd., oil paint, acrylic paint, and fabric on wood (2014)

Waffle House, oil and acrylic on fabric (2014)


About T.J. Dedeaux

T.J. Dedeaux-Norris earned her B.A. in art with a minor in African American studies from the University of California, Los Angeles in 2010, and an M.F.A. in Painting at Yale University, Conn., in 2012. She is an Assistant Professor at the University of Iowa, Iowa City. Dedeaux-Norris had previously taught at Santa Monica College, Calif.; Dillard University, New Orleans, La.; and Xavier University, New Orleans, La. She met David C. Driskell in 2009 while doing her residency at Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, Maine.

She exhibits widely, nationally and internationally, in such locations as Ronchini Gallery, London, United Kingdom; Savannah College School of Art and Design, Atlanta, Ga.; Contemporary Arts Center, New Orleans, La.; and Arthur Ross Gallery, Philadelphia, Pa.

“With myself and my communities as subject, I use painting, video, photography, music, performance, installation, project-based art, context art, confession, the internet and institutional critique to explore the internal drives and external influences that shape identity. My practice critiques the invisibility of blackness in cultural forms built upon the appropriation of popular and sacred black expressions and idioms… I explored the roles of rapper, video hoe, certified audio engineer, certified massage therapist, phone sex operator, stripper, prostitute, a sexually exploited, uneducated woman, porn star, occasional drug dealer, barista, customer service call center agent, professor, and art star- which now all inform my art and social practice. In addition to making my own music and music videos, full of tongue-in-cheek hip-hop posturing and works about my identity as an artist and a mixed-race black woman, I sample and mix materials liberally in my practice as well.”

Janice Darden Frame

Selected Works: View Album of Artwork Here

Free Your Mind, mixed media on paper (2020)

Island Home, oil on canvas (2013)

OMO, watercolor, graphite and pattern paper (2017)


About Janice Darden Frame

Janice Darden Frame holds a B.A. in fiber and textiles and art education from Fisk University, Nashville, Tenn., where she met Professor David C. Driskell. She holds a M.A. in curriculum and instruction from Cambridge College, Boston, Mass. For the past 30 years she has been an art educator on Martha’s Vineyard, Mass.

“As an African American artist in today’s world, I embody the vast differences found in our collective backgrounds. I view them as cultural assets. We are always self-discovering and these self-discoveries take us in surprising directions. We must gain strength from what we learn from each other as well as listen to that persistent, ever present, intuitive self. The connection of one’s own rich heritage and personal growth will travel into the inevitable and critical connection between African Americans and Africa. These connections are rich and very important. They Exist! My work, I hope, will serve as a creative connection between the African diaspora and western culture. It is this connection that cause my creative forces to react.”

In This Section

Driskell delivering diplomas at Talladega College.

Click through the following tabs to learn about the following artists: 

  • Joseph Hamilton
  • Shaun Leonardo
  • Eva Lundsager
  • Cecilia Mandrile
Driskell presenting diplomas to students during
his first year teaching at Talladega College (1995). 
Photograph is part of The David C. Driskell Papers.
Gift of Prof. and Mrs. David C. Driskell.

Joseph Hamilton

Joseph Hamilton Remembering David Driskell

“One of my fondest memories of Dr. Driskell was how down to earth he was. I had forgotten something in his car and he gave me his car keys to get it from his car. I never forgot that because I felt it was odd that he had so much trust in me. He also shared his home phone number and the address to his house in Maine (see image from notebook). I also was first introduced to many African American artists that I never knew while in his class. I took many art history classes before his class, however the artist he discussed were never mentioned. It was an eye opening experience.”

David Driskell's Address in a Notebook


Selected Works: View Album of Artwork Here

Minh in Yellow Ao Dai, oil painting (2007)

Self Portrait, oil painting (2005)

Weight of Existence, oil painting (2019)


About Joseph Hamilton

Before receiving his M.L.S. from the University of Maryland in 2005, Joseph received his bachelor's degree in art from the University of Maryland and received his M.F.A. in painting in 2002 from SUNY Albany, N.Y. He tries to balance his time between creating paintings and writing music in his spare time, and also thinking of ways to improve interlibrary loan service at the Library of Congress.

"My painting 'The Weight of Existence' is a statement of my current mindset. In this painting I am in my studio wearing my PJs. Past paintings are on the wall behind me as well as unfinished paintings on the floor. The blank canvas behind my head is what I am contemplating as I plot an idea for the next painting or maybe my next move in life.  This painting also has some camouflaged Japanese Kanji that has to be seen in the correct light in order to be visible. You will only see them if you are looking for them or if you see the painting at a certain angle. Those kanji are a segue to my next painting which will be of my Japanese model who inspired the Kanji for this painting."

Shaun Leonardo

Selected Works: View Album of Artwork Here

David (Dr. Driskell), sign enamel and pearlescent pigment on MDF cutout (2020)


About Shaun Leonardo

Shaun Leonardo is a Brooklyn-based artist from Queens, New York City. He received his B.A. in visual arts in 2001 from Bowdoin College, Brunswick, Maine, which is where he met Professor David C. Driskell. He earned his M.F.A. from the San Francisco Art Institute, Calif., in 2005. In 2004, he completed a residency at the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, Maine.

Leonardo’s multidisciplinary work negotiates societal expectations of manhood, namely definitions surrounding black and brown masculinities, along with its notions of achievement, collective identity, and experience of failure. His performance practice, anchored by his work in Assembly—a diversion program for court-involved youth at the Brooklyn-based, non-profit Recess—is participatory and invested in a process of embodiment. He is a recipient of support from Creative Capital, Guggenheim Social Practice (2018), Art for Justice Fund (2018) and A Blade of Grass (2019), and was recently profiled in the New York Times. His work has been featured at The Guggenheim Museum, the High Line, and New Museum, all in New York City. Leonardo’s solo exhibition, “The Breath of Empty Space”, was presented at MASS MoCA, North Adams, Mass. in 2020 and then traveled to The Bronx Museum, New York City, N.Y., in 2021.

Eva Lundsager

Selected Works: View Album of Artwork Here

Every There 34, watercolor and Sumi ink on paper (2018)

Once More 11, oil on canvas (2017)

Once More 16, oil on canvas (2017)


About Eva Lundsager

Eva Lundsager received her B.A. from the Department of Art at the University of Maryland, College Park, Md., where she studied with Professor Driskell, artists Sam Gilliam, Anne Truitt, Claudia DeMonte and Nick Krushenick, and writer and theorist Jack Burnham. She received her M.F.A. from Hunter College, New York City, N.Y.

Lundsager's abstract paintings evoke expansiveness and a sense of watchful waiting. Structured as an imagined, changing space, imagery simultaneously specific and indeterminate suggests life forms moving through atmosphere, over a planet's surface, and deep into solid ground. The paintings are built of varied processes of paint application: layers of pours, drips, glazes, and brushstrokes, and use complex color – sometimes seductive, sometimes alienating. Paint becomes animated forms on the edge of recognition. Lundsager's paintings describe unfamiliar territory in the midst of transition as events of indeterminate consequence unfold.

Her first solo exhibition was at Stephanie Theodore Art Gallery in New York City with subsequent solo exhibitions at other galleries, including “Liquid Terrain, 20 Years of Works on Paper by Eva Lundsager” at the Sheldon Art Galleries in Saint Louis, Mo. Significant group exhibitions include the deCordova New England Biennial 2019 at the deCordova Museum in Lincoln, Mass.

Cecilia Mandrile

Cecilia Mandrile

“The subjects portrayed were made during my MFA studies at University of Maryland and accompanied me in my many journeys since. Since the precious studio visits, Prof. Driskell and I discussed notions of home and displacement, portraits and landscapes, layers of life. David used to drop me a line each time he or someone from his family visited Argentina (my motherland). Even decades later, he remembered my roots. I found it very touching. Revisiting my conversations with Prof. Driskell, I still feel his unique warm presence, a profoundly inspirational mentorship. He was a true ‘Patriarca’, and so his spirit remains. This is why I decided to propose to present the series Apatrida in the context of this exhibition. These dolls may find themselves stateless and father-less, but in their dreams, they remain lucid to the patriarch’s wisdom.”


Selected Works: View Album of Artwork Here

Apatrida (Sleepers), pigment print and oil painting on architectural blueprint (1969-2019)

Apatrida (Sleepers I), pigment print and oil painting on architectural blueprint (1969-2019)

Apatrida (Sleepers II), pigment print and oil painting on architectural blueprint (1969-2019)


About Cecilia Mandrile

Cecilia Mandrile, born in Argentina, holds a B.F.A. from the National University of Córdoba, Argentina, an M.F.A. from the University of Maryland, College Park, where she studied with Professor David C. Driskell, and a Ph.D. from the University of the West of England, Bristol.

Mandrile is a visual artist whose print-based practice explores the fragmentation and fluidity of identity caused by displacement. She has exhibited in prestigious international venues such as El Museo del Barrio, New York City, N.Y.; The Victoria & Albert Museum, London, England; WPA Corcoran, Washington, D.C.; and the National Museum of Fine Arts, Buenos Aires, Argentina.

Mandrile has been a resident fellow artist at international programs such as Gasworks Studios, London; Makan-Bait, Amman, Jordan; Kala Art Institute, Berkeley, Calif.; Kunstihoone, Tallinn, Estonia; and Ludwig Foundation of Cuba. Her work is included in private and public collections around the world, including the Victoria & Albert Museum, London, England; Casa de las Americas, Havana, Cuba; Royal Museum of Fine Arts, Antwerp, Belgium; Museum of Latin American Art, Long Beach, Calif.; and the City Museum of Art, Gyor, Hungary.

In This Section

Driskell teaching Methods and Materials at UMD around table

Click through the following tabs to learn about the following artists: 

  • Angela W.C. Niyi
  • Mary Lovelace O'Neal
  • Adrienne Patel
  • Beverly Paul
Driskell teaching 'Methods and Materials' at the
University of Maryland (1995). 
Photograph is part of The David C. Driskell Papers.
Gift of Prof. and Mrs. David C. Driskell.

Angela W.C. Niyi

Selected Works: View Album of Artwork Here

Flight of the Gazelles, oil paint and mixed media (2019)

Innocence, oil paint and mixed media (1995)

The Wedding March, oil paint and mixed media (2014)

Mary Lovelace O'Neal

Mary Lovelace O'Neal Remembering David Driskell

"A Few Things About Mr. Driskell:



On Freedom:

Mr. Driskell, like my father, let me be as crazy as I needed to be. He encouraged my work — our work — in the student movement, the civil rights and labor movements.

On Research:

He taught me and shared so many really important pieces in this puzzle of my life, and that was not an easy thing for him to deal with considering my dyslexic self. He taught me to fight for what I believed, and he taught me how to research and respect my own thoughts and my own work as I looked into and examined the lives and the work of others.

On Criticism (over-parenting):  

After I had taken to my bed behind a particularly rough critique — my way of handling issues was to sleep until they resolved — Mr. Driskell came to my dorm and told the desk “I want her down here, next to me, in five minutes.” As we walked away from the dorm back to the department on that cold, late autumn day (I pajama-clad, dirty sneakers and dirty trench coat, errant braids sticking outta my hat), he said to me that I had to learn to take on what was said in a critique. I was to fight for what I believed even if it was wrong; I could always change my mind. It was just fine to live in contradiction. I was to take what was said and use what I could, save for later what I couldn’t figure out how to use at the moment, and banish the rest of the crap to hell. Maybe find a way to retrieve it in later life. He went on to say that one must learn to survive all, to fight another day, to lick the wounds and return the next day beaten, but unbowed. I learned a very hard lesson over my years at Howard University: this art world is a very rough-and-tumble place. You have to stand up to it and stand up for what you believe, again even if it is wrong. You have to stand up to being wrong, figuring how to be right as you go along. In critiques over the years, I learned to exercise a very important principle, and when I began to teach I never, never lost sight of it: I was to try to deliver true and, when necessary, very hard criticism, but always, always remember to try not to immobilize a maker, try to never incapacitate the maker, fellow artist, or student, little child, or myself. Self-criticism is deep, dark, and mysterious, and can render the most harm.  

On Women:

He let women move as we would. I never remember an instance when he denied support to US because we were women. We women, with his unflagging support, have managed to have careers as important and often superior to any of the men with whom we grew up at Howard University. I dare say we outnumber the men in great successes, in éclat, in the academy, and in our professions — an unimagined equality of numbers in medicine, commerce, literature, science. We are artists, dancers, choreographers, musicians, moviemakers, painters, printers, architects, designers, and on and on and on. We defied the odds and he put his weight on the scale to make certain we had a chance.

On Love of Life:

He was a party guy. He could give a magnificent party — in your house in Oakland, Santiago, or at the beach in Concon, or at his in Maine or Maryland, frying fish in his big black iron pot on a throne of honor between the house and his studio. He could bring a party of folks and food. He could send a party-lobster from Maine, or crab from the eastern shore of Maryland. He was an unparalleled storyteller, a raconteur telling better lies than artist Patricio Moreno Toro or Carrie Mae Weems. He was known to come to openings of friends and students alike across the world, half-way or all of the way across this country in a little church or in a major museum. He wrote and lectured and told and painted the story which helped to open up the history of both African American artists and AFRICAN artists, AND ARTISTS of the African diaspora. His scholarship pushed wide open the partially shuttered doors, first opened in part by Alaine Locke and James A. Porter. 

On Leaving: 

He was our forever stamp — he could get you where you needed to go no matter how long ago the stamp had been bought. 

I miss him. Of course, I am not alone in that. Had I known when he came to my opening in NYC at the Mnuchin Gallery that he had come to say goodbye, I would never have let him go. 

In never go away sadness.



Selected Works: View Album of Artwork Here

Running with Black Panthers and White Doves (from the Panthers in My Father’s Palace series), mixed media on canvas (c. 1989-1990)

Pink Self Portrait, mixed media on canvas (ca. early-mid 1990s)

Untitled, lampblack, charcoal, glitter, masking tape, and pastel on canvas (1977-1978)


About Mary Lovelace O’Neal

O’Neal received her B.F.A. in 1964 from Howard University in Washington, D.C., where she studied with David C. Driskell. She credits her love of the arts to her father and Professor Robert Schnell. She earned her M.F.A. from Columbia University, N.Y., in 1969. O’Neal’s experiences during the Civil Rights Movement, her childhood in Jackson, Miss., and her extensive travels through Morocco, Egypt and South America serve as her prominent influences. In 1963, she was a student at Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture where she learned the functionality and skills for painting. O’Neal had the opportunity to work with other fellow printmakers including Robert Blackburn, The Printmaking Workshop of New York City, Nemesio Antunez, Director of Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes and Founder of Taller 99 in Santiago, Chile, Tom Vanderlinden at University of Texas at Austin and Professor Karl Kasten, founder of the Department of Printmaking at the University of California.

O’Neal is a Professor Emeritus at the University of California, Berkeley, where she was the Chair of the Department of Art Practice from 1999-2004. She has received numerous awards for her painting and printmaking, including the Artiste en France Award from the French Government and Moet & Chandon in 1993-94; the Biennale Internationale Du Dakar, Dakar, Senegal, Africa in 1992; and the Premier Print Award, Printing Industries of America in 2003. Her artwork has been exhibited in many countries across the world including Senegal, France, Chile, Nigeria, and Japan as well as domestically in the U.S., and is held in the permanent collection of institutions such as the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, Calif., and the National Museum of Fine Arts in Santiago, Chile.

Also influenced by the work of Abstract Expressionists such as Willem de Kooning and Franz Kline, O’Neal’s work often includes strong brush strokes and explosive abstract shapes. Through the years, her style has become more specific with repeated patterns, yet has maintained its ardent sentiment. O'Neal has described her work style as "aerobic;" she does not paint one canvas at a time, rather she works on multiple projects. Though her compositions often border on pure abstraction, she produces fleeting discernable figures through her veils of colors and gestures.

Adrienne Patel

Selected Works: View Album of Artwork Here

Daydream, acrylic on canvas (2017)

Our Mother of Perpetual Anguish and Sadness, mixed media on canvas (2017)

Sacred Secret, acrylic on canvas (2019)


About Adrienne Patel

Adrienne Patel is well-versed artist, utilizing painting, drawing, ceramics, and mixed media in her work. Patel graduated from Fisk University, Nashville, Tenn., with a B.A. in fine arts, where she received the Hines-Brook Award for outstanding student in art. She met Prof. David C. Driskell at Fisk University. She attended Skowhegan School of Painting & Sculpture in Maine and Cranbrook Academy of Art, Bloomfield Hills, Mich. Patel graduated from Peabody College, Nashville, Tenn., with a M.A. in Art and worked towards her Ph.D. in Art Education at Illinois State University in Normal.

Her initial interest in art began while growing up in South Carolina. She has a strong connection to raising awareness of African American heritage and often explores luminosity, space and spirit through the ebb and flow of water, color and textures on paper. Her play with organic shapes, vibrant colors, and bold textures reflect her exploration of new perspectives.

She has participated in numerous exhibitions over the years, and her work is included in various private and public collections. Over the years Patel has received prestigious awards and scholarships from Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, Maine and Brooklyn Museum School of Art, New York City, N.Y.

Beverly Paul

Beverly Paul Remembering David Driskell

“What comes to mind first when I think of Dr. Driskell is his wealth of information. He was truly a griot. I can remember, as a student, hanging on to his every word; he had a way of speaking that made you listen and want to know more. He was a mentor in every sense of the word. He invited us into his home during the Christmas season for a festive meal (which consisted of many southern dishes, including Mrs. Driskell’s unmatched sweet potato pie) and to take in artworks that hung on the walls like an exhibit, including a Rembrandt! I was inspired by him to collect works of art which now hang on my walls…and yes, much like an exhibit. As a mentor, he also encouraged us by taking the time to acknowledge our accomplishments. I currently have a note taped to my easel that he wrote in the exhibit book for a show that I curated as a student. The gifts that he imparted to us as a teacher, mentor and friend are invaluable. We must now make sure those gifts are passed on to future generations, for if we do, our culture, heritage, and the world will be all the better for it.”

Driskell Note to Beverly Paul 1994 in Notebook


Selected Works: View Album of Artwork Here

Gesture in Red, Black and White, acrylic on canvas (2015)

No Lost Sheep, lithograph (1994)

Homage to David Driskell – Sitting on the Front Porch Drinking Ice Tea While Looking at a Rainbow, mixed media (2020)


About Beverly Paul

Beverly Paul was born in Williamston, North Carolina. She received her B.A. in studio art from the University of Maryland, College Park, where she met Prof. David C. Driskell, and her M.F.A. at Howard University, Washington, D.C. Paul is also a registered nurse and a graduate of Norfolk State University, Va.

Infused with African American tradition found in quilts and textiles, Paul’s paintings incorporate elements such as vertical stripes, bold colors, large designs, religious writing, and symbolic forms applied through collage. Her work consists primarily of narrative collages and paintings that range from figurative to nonrepresentational. Beverly Paul’s work is in both private and public collections. Paul currently lives in Bowie, Md., where she continues to create art out of her private studio.

In This Section

Driskell and Stephanie Pogue in the foyer of the UMD Department of Art, eating.

Click through the following tabs to learn about the following artists: 

  • Jefferson Pinder
  • Stephanie Pogue
  • Karen Powell
  • Ellington Robinson
Faculty and students at the University of
Maryland Department of Art foyer (1982).
Next to Driskell is Stephanie Pogue.
Photograph is part of The David C. Driskell Papers.
Gift of Prof. and Mrs. David C. Driskell.

Jefferson Pinder

Jefferson Pinder Remembering David Driskell

“We need to acknowledge that Dr. David Driskell was a dandy. Even on a typical day, you may have caught Dr. Driskell sporting a fashionable action suit from decades past. I remember an apropos navy blue short-sleeved jump suit that he wore in the studio. In his home in Hyattsville, he had an epic closet that documented fashion for nearly a century. Blue, brown and check-grey suits that modestly reflected years of couture. When you think of a ‘walk-in’ closet, often one may think of the opulence of being surrounded by your own things. That wasn’t the vibe in Driskell’s closet. I’d consider his wardrobe a ‘style archive’. I think it’s essential to understand that he was a collector to the bone. Arguably one of his greatest attributes is that he understood the value in objects and did not let them go. His long mink fur coat was a reflection of his Howard college days. His form fitting mod suits from the sixties mirrored his cool style from his Fisk days. And his epic 70’s leisure suits looked equally stunning (and nostalgic) in the early 2000’s when I first saw him styling them at the University of Maryland. In my limited imagination I didn’t realize how dapper a leisure suit could be, but I knew only a few people had the confidence to pull it off. Similar to his art collection, Driskell had an affinity to materials and provenance. He had quality clothing from all over the world. Many of us would’ve taken these items to a thrift once the prevailing styles had passed. But not David Driskell. He understood that like fine art, fashion is a record of experiences and is a reflection of how an individual is perceived in society. When a suit was more than a suit, he knew it and was impeccably dressed.”


Selected Works

float, performance video (2019)

  • float memorializes the killing of Eugene Williams, who died on July 27th, 1919. Williams, age seventeen, was stoned to death by white teenagers while floating over to the “white side” of a Chicago beach. float features a group of 78 performers drifting in Lake Michigan on the same day and time that Williams was killed.

    In essence this performance acts on multiple levels. As a memorial, an act of defiance, a time capsule, and a union. Drawing attention to a body of water which in reality becomes a destination of connecting the past to the present. Through thinking about these former invisible color lines and what it means to activate them, Pinder uses this site to highlight the presence of something which teeters between the invisible and visible. Everybody knows about the south side of Chicago, but nobody knows how it really began. This is how it really began. It's one thing to read about this in a book or online, but when you're actually in that space, it almost demands something from you physically and mentally. 

Prowl, performance video (2020)

THIS IS NOT A DRILL, performance video (2019)

  • THIS IS NOT A DRILL is part of Jefferson Pinder's Red Summer Tour that explores racial injustices that occurred a hundred years ago in 1919 and still make up the fiber of Black experiences nationwide. Pinder draws inspiration for THIS IS NOT A DRILL from The Freedom Riders, who offered an interventionist model. By pushing the boundaries of what was acceptable, they used their physicality to elicit interaction. Through movement, they embodied change.

    Preparing to engage with the demons of past and present day, Jefferson Pinder and performers probe into close-order drill, shooter drills, boxing, and Bo staff training to delve into communal strength. Considering training techniques inspired by the Student Non-violent Coordinating Committee, The Black Panther Party, and Marine Corps hand-drill training, the performance crew finds unity through ritualized physical routines.


About Jefferson Pinder

Jefferson Pinder received his Bachelor’s degree in theatre from the University of Maryland, College Park, and studied at the Asolo Theatre Conservatory at Florida State University. In 2000, he returned to the University of Maryland to receive his Master of Fine Arts in painting and mixed media from the Department of Art. In 2002, Pinder was selected as the first David C. Driskell Center’s Fellow and worked closely with David C. Driskell at his Hyattsville studio. Pinder was an Assistant Professor in the Department of Art at the University of Maryland, College Park from 2002-2011. Currently, he is an Associate Professor in the Contemporary Practices department at the School of the Art Institute in Chicago, Ill.

Jefferson Pinder began his visual arts journey working in the medium of collage, inspired by David C. Driskell, Romare Bearden, and Robert Rauschenburg. Pinder is known as a video and performance artist, where he incorporates a multitude of elements from the American experience in his exploration of personal narratives, reconstructing and investigating the essence of identity in contemporary society. From his drawings and collages, to his sculptures and performance pieces, Pinder’s work seeks to provide personal and social commentary.

His work has been featured in numerous international solo and group shows including at The Studio Museum in Harlem, New York, N.Y.; the Wadsworth Athenaeum Museum of Art, Hartford, Conn.; the High Museum of Art, Atlanta, Ga.; and the Zacheta National Gallery in Warsaw, Poland.

Stephanie Pogue

Selected Works: View Album of Artwork Here

Aaron’s Meadow, color viscosity etching (1977)

After Kadimas, etching (1968)

India Pattern, mixed media (1986)


About Stephanie Pogue

Stephanie Elaine Pogue was born in Shelby, North Carolina in 1944. In 1962, Pogue entered Syracuse University, N.Y., but transferred to the Department of Art at Howard University, Washington, D.C., where she studied with Professors James Porter, Loïs Mailou Jones, James Wells, Lila O. Asher, and David C. Driskell. Professor Pogue received the Outstanding Graduate Award when she graduated in 1966 with a B.F.A. in painting. She earned her M.F.A. degree from Cranbrook Academy of Art in Bloomfield, Mich., in 1968. Subsequently, Professor Pogue accepted a teaching position at the Department of Art at Fisk University in Nashville, Tennessee. This provided her with the opportunity to reunite with her mentor, Professor David C. Driskell. The faculty at Fisk University’s Department of Art, founded by Aaron Douglas, included at that time a dynamic roster: Earl Hooks, Keith Morrison, Martin Puryear, Gregory Ridley, and Walter Williams. Professor Pogue later became Chair of the Department of Art and Director of the Art Gallery.

In 1981, Professor Pogue accepted a teaching position in the Department of Art at the University of Maryland, College Park, where she was later promoted to a full professor. She also chaired the Department of Art from 1993 to 1998 and served as Acting Assistant Dean for Equity Affairs in the University of Maryland’s College of Arts and Humanities.

Professor Stephanie Pogue specialized in printmaking, papermaking, and works on paper. She has made a lasting impact as an artist, educator, and collector. In 1981, she received a Fulbright-Hays Cross-Cultural Fellowship in Curriculum Development to study the architecture and sculpture of India. In 1986, she was awarded another Fulbright Hays Cross-Cultural Fellowship to study the traditional arts and crafts of Pakistan. In 1991 she received a University of Maryland travel award to study in Warsaw, Poland. Professor Pogue exhibited widely, both nationally and internationally. Her works can be found in the Whitney Museum of American Art and The Studio Museum in Harlem in New York City, N.Y., and the David C. Driskell Center at the University of Maryland, College Park. In the fall of 2008, the Driskell Center presented a solo exhibition “Arabesque: The Art of Stephanie Pogue”.

Professor Stephanie Pogue passed away on November 12, 2002.

Karen Powell

Karen Powell Remembering David Driskell

“I often reflect on my experience at Fisk University (1965-69) under the tutelage of David Driskell. Not only was he a scholar and a mentor, he was a kind and considerate friend.
He built the art department at Fisk into a first class department by inviting and exposing students to such notable African American artist as Walt Williams, Earl Hooks, Keith Morrison and Stephanie Pogue to name a few. We as students were so fortunate to be exposed and influenced by such prestigious and dedicated artist in the 1960’s.
“As a scholar, I remember taking a course David offered entitled ‘History of African American Artist.' Of course, I was intrigued and knew it would be important to understand the historical impact African American artist had on the art world.
“After welcoming us to the class I remember David saying: ‘Well, as you are all aware I have not assigned a textbook for this class.’ He paused then smiled and said, ‘...because there is none!’ In essence he was teaching us from his own knowledge and research. He was putting a curriculum together from his own personal experiences with colleagues and the little that was recorded. I was so impressed. This was historical, and I hung on his every word.”


Selected Works: View Album of Artwork Here

Amanda, mixed media with acrylics (2008)

I Believe I Can, mixed media with acrylics (2018)

Sunflowers in their Hair, mixed media with acrylics (2011)


About Karen Powell

Karen Powell has come full circle with her visual voice. She holds a B.A. in fine arts from Fisk University, Nashville, Tenn., where she met Professor David C. Driskell; she later attended the University of Chicago's Graduate Program in Visual Arts, Ill.

After an extensive career as an award-winning graphic designer and art director, Karen returned to the fine arts. Her paintings are the visual representation and the language she uses to convey her childhood memories through mixed media and visual storytelling. Her work breathes life into universal childhood experiences with the integration of vintage photos and themes of children playing street games: solitary moments of quiet grace and undeniable dignity span age, gender, and time. Her work celebrates the African American experience in a positive and absorbing way not commonly seen.

Powell’s work has been featured on Saatchi Art, the Black Entertainment TV Network, Black Art in America, and UpScale magazine. Karen exhibits extensively in diverse galleries throughout the United States, including Alston Fine Art, New York, N.Y.; Renaissance Art Gallery, Boston, Mass.; Black Art in America, Philadelphia, Pa.; and the Museum of Science and Industry, Chicago, Ill.; her work is in private collections both in the United States and abroad.

Ellington Robinson

Ellington Robinson Remembering David Driskell

“Dr. Driskell and I had many great sessions of him mentoring me. When I interned at his studio in Hyattsville we had many conversations on farming and living off the land. He would pick vegetables from his garden and they would make their way into a lunch that he was cooking for us after working since the morning. He was such a nurturing figure. He believed in me, and although very patient, he only had very high expectations. I will forever miss him. 

“I met Dr. David Driskell in New York, in 1996. We really hit it off from the first time we met. Throughout the years of staying connected, he was brilliant, elegant and as funny as you want to be. He made me laugh and then would give me wisdom and knowledge a second later.  9 years thereafter our introduction, I found myself at UMD in 2005 and I started working for David C. Driskell Center in the Spring of 2006. 

“I always gave him his space out of respect, but I really wanted to prove to him that I was going to be something in this art world. He told me I would be. I read all the books he recommended and I worked at my craft constantly with his charge to do so. He was such a nurturing figure- he shared his wonderful family with me; he believed in me, and although very patient, he only had very high expectations. I will forever miss him. What a teacher, what a friend, what an ambassador of a gentleman.”


Selected Works: View Album of Artwork Here

Ant Lion, acrylic, collage, graphite and oil on paper (2016)

Dirga, acrylic and graphite on paper (2016)

Tyranny of Distance, collage, found objects, and oil on wood (2016)


About Ellington Robinson

Ellington Robinson is based in Washington, D.C. and the Virgin Islands. He earned his BA in English from Morehouse College, a diploma in filmmaking from the New York Film Academy in Paris, and his M.F.A. in Painting and Mixed Media from the University of Maryland, College Park where he received the Anne Truitt Fellowship, David C Driskell Graduate Assistant Fellowship, and David C. Driskell Award of Excellence Teaching Fellowship.

His work is included in many distinguished public and private collections: Studio Museum in Harlem; the nation’s first museum of modern art, the Phillips Collection in Washington, D.C.; the US Department of State, Art in Embassies Program for the US Embassy of Oslo, Norway; and the City of Chicago for Grand Crossing Library. 

His work was recently published in “Fired Up! Ready to Go!: Finding Beauty, Demanding Equity: An African American Life in Art. The Collections of Peggy Cooper Cafritz,” Washington Post, Interview Magazine, and Callaloo: Art & Culture in the African Diaspora. He is a recipient of the D.C. Commission on the Arts and Humanities Art Bank Collection (2011 and 2012), and D.C. Commission on the Arts and Humanities Artist Fellowship Award (2015 and 2018). He lectured with David C. Driskell on Artists and Mentorship at the National Gallery of Art in Washington D.C. In the Virgin Islands. Ellington has also been honored as a U.S. Virgin Islands Ambassador for his contribution to and promotion of the cultural richness of the territory and the Caribbean (2013). He was also selected for an artist residency at the Caribbean Museum Center for the Arts in St. Croix, which he completed in 2015 and The Fountainhead Residency in Miami, June of 2018.

In This Section

Driskell teaching at Skowhegan

Click through the following tabs to learn about the following artists: 

  • Preston Sampson
  • Gail Shaw-Clemons
  • John Simmons
  • Sylvia Snowden
Driskell addressing students during a guest lecture at
Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture (1975). 
Photograph is part of The David C. Driskell Papers. 
Gift of Prof. and Mrs. David C. Driskell.

Preston Sampson

Selected Works: View Album of Artwork Here

Bigtop with Natural Crown, acrylic on canvas (2017)

Family Circus, mixed media on tar paper (2011)

Langston Blues, pulp painting on handmade paper (2006)


About Preston Sampson

Preston Sampson received a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from the University of Maryland, College Park, in 1984, where he studied under David C. Driskell. According to Sampson, Driskell emphasized expression more than technical composition, and artists’ contributions within historical perspective.

Sampson’s expressive brush strokes and vibrant use of color are qualities that enhance the everyday subjects in his paintings. He is a figurative artist who often uses acrylic paints on unstretched and unprimed canvas. A recurrent theme in Sampson’s work is the dominant male figure done in a grand scale, where black males appear strong, dynamic, and somewhat heroic. His unique process of creating art consists of combining pulp paints and pigments on handmade paper with pastel drawings on top, resulting in a three-dimensional quality that heightens the paintings’ presence and sense of movement.

He exhibits nationally and has been featured in numerous national publications, such as Town & Country, Playbill, American Visions, and Black Enterprise magazines. He has also been critically recognized in the Washington Post for his first retrospective at the University of Maryland Art Gallery in 1997, and in the International Review of African American Art comprehensive guide for collecting in 1998. A major breakthrough came in 1997 when Sampson was commissioned by Absolut Vodka to create a painting for their award winning ad campaign. Preston Sampson has been a part of a traveling collection which has made stops in Miami, New York, Detroit, Atlanta, Chicago, Houston, Philadelphia, and Washington, D.C.

The David C. Driskell Center art collection includes 15 paintings, prints, and mixed media by Preston Sampson.

Gail Shaw-Clemons

Gail Shaw-Clemons Remembering David Driskell

“I studied African history and African American art history from Dr. Driskell at the University of Maryland in the 1970s. It was the first time studying black history.”


Selected Works: View Album of Artwork Here

African Mask #6, gel medium print (2020)

We Wear the Mask, Female, archival pigment print (2020)

We Wear the Mask, Male, archival pigment print (2020)


About Gail Shaw-Clemons

Born in Washington, D.C., Gail Shaw-Clemons received her B.A. (1976) and M.F.A. (1979) with degrees specializing in printmaking and drawing from the Department of Art at the University of Maryland, College Park, where she studied under Professor David C. Driskell, Thaddeus Lapinski, and Martin Puryear.

Shaw-Clemons is currently an adjunct professor at Bowie State University, Md. Prior to that, while teaching art for 24 years at the United Nations International School in New York, she had the opportunity to travel internationally representing her job and her work. She spent many summers away at international residencies making art. She exhibited extensively and her work is in collections as far away as Beijing, China, Brazil, and Sweden.

Her works are included in public and private collections across the world, including some in the U.S., Brazil, and Norway, and have been included in exhibitions at the Banneker Douglass Museum, Annapolis, Md.; The Library of Congress, Washington, D.C.; and Edison Gallery, Washington, D.C.

John Simmons

Selected Works: View Album of Artwork Here

MLK Looks On, mixed media (1978)

Walk Tall in Spite of It All, mixed media (2020)

Window Writing, archival pigment (1969)

Sylvia Snowden

Sylvia Snowden Remembering David Driskell

"I looked through my emails and ran across one in which I asked Mister Driskell to be safe; his reply: he and Mrs. Driskell would be safe (from the virus). I have always called him Mister Driskell, and at times he would sign emails in that manner.

“Mister Driskell taught me painting at Howard University during the 1960s. He had discussions about impasto and philosophy. He was always receptive and encouraging to me, which I shall always appreciate.

“Mister Driskell - when I was about 18, I was in Mister Driskell's office at Howard University, talking. I made the statement, ‘When truth changes.’ Mister Driskell explained that ‘Truth never changes.’ That is one of the many of Mister Driskell's teachings/explanations/care for his students. There are many lessons he taught us and I shall always cherish that time he spent with us.

“Mister Driskell was never too busy, too tired to talk with his students about anything. I took Landscape Painting from Mister Driskell at Howard University. I painted autumn trees, using all of the colors one associates with fall. I can still call to memory that image. Before and after Mister Driskell. Mr. Driskell came into the studio, looked at the painting, picked up a palette knife and moved the paint all over the canvas. I was so upset. This was the time of existentialism and the me, me, my and I period. That act hurt. He destroyed my effort. But I grew from that experience. Which expanded my mode of expression and I never painted trees the old way, my way, again. Growth is often painful.”


Selected Works: View Album of Artwork Here

The Feel of Paint 2, acrylic, plastic, and mirror on canvas (2017)

The Feel of Paint 17, acrylic and aluminum (2017)

The Feel of Paint 23, acrylic and aluminum (2017)


About Sylvia Snowden

Sylvia Snowden holds both a Bachelor of Arts and a Master of Fine Arts degree from Howard University, Washington, D.C., where she studied under Professor David C. Driskell. She also received a scholarship to Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, Maine, and has a certificate from La Grande Chaumier in Paris, France.

Snowden has taught at Howard University, Washington, D.C.; Cornell University, N.Y.; and Yale University, New Haven, Conn., and served as an artist-in-residence, panelist, visiting artist, lecturer/instructor and curator in universities, galleries and art schools both in the United States and internationally. She has exhibited at the Corcoran Gallery of Art and the Phillips Collection both in Washington, D.C.; Baltimore Museum of Art, Md.; The Getty Museum, Los Angeles, Calif.; and the Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art at Cornell University, N.Y., among others. Her works have been shown globally, including in Chile, the Netherlands, Ethiopia, and Australia.

In This Section

Driskell and Arthur Bacon

Click through the following tabs to learn about the following artists: 

  • Frank Stewart
  • Lou Stovall
  • Franklin White
  • Ernestina "Tina" Wyatt
  • Sophia Zarambouka
Driskell and student Arthur Bacon (1996). 
Photographer: Frank Stewart.
Photograph is part of The David C. Driskell Papers.
Gift of Prof. and Mrs. David C. Driskell.

Frank Stewart

Selected Works: View Album of Artwork Here

David Driskell, C-print (2008; printed 2013) 

Driskell Shack, C-print (2008; printed 2013)

Driskell in Georgia, C-print (2008; printed 2013)


About Frank Stewart

Frank Stewart was born in Nashville, Tenn., and was raised in Memphis, Tenn., and Chicago, Ill. He studied at the Art Institute of Chicago, Ill., and earned his B.F.A. in photography at Cooper Union, N.Y. in 1975. Until recently he served as a senior staff photographer at Jazz at Lincoln Center, New York City, N.Y.

Since graduating, his work has been shown across the country, including galleries at The High Museum, Atlanta, Ga.; Cooper Union Gallery, N.Y.; Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, Calif.; and Corcoran Gallery, Washington, D.C.

Stewart’s photography centers on African American artists as well as jazz musicians and culture. He has published books on topics related to African American art and artists, including Romare Bearden. His work is currently part of collections at the Museum of Modern Art, N.Y.; High Museum of Art, Ga.; The Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, N.Y.; and the Museum of African Art and Origins, N.Y.

The David C. Driskell Center owns twenty-one photographs taken from 1973 to 1993 by Frank Stewart; mostly they portray David C. Driskell, sometimes with other individuals, including Romare Bearden. Among Stewart’s publications are “Romare Bearden, Photographs by Frank Stewart”, published by Pomegranate Inc., Calif., in 2004.

Lou Stovall

Lou Stovall Remembering David Driskell

"Lou went to Howard in 1962 and David returned to Howard in 1963 as a professor. Lou became David's teaching assistant and they started a lifelong friendship. Howard at that time was a special place. So many artists came out of that period with Professor James Porter along with other great teachers like James Wells, Louis Mailou Jones and Lila O Asher. David stayed in touch with all of his fellow artists and students. In the old Howard days David would bring several students to his home. Thelma was a great cook and welcomed all into their home."


Selected Works: View Album of Artwork Here

Dappled Things, silkscreen monoprint collage (2012)

For Ascending Larks, silkscreen (1981)

The Persistence of Nature, graphite drawing (2005)


About Lou Stovall

Lou Stovall is a highly regarded printmaker, known for working with silkscreens. Stovall was raised in Springfield, Mass., and studied at the Rhode Island School of Design, Providence, from 1956-1957. He later enrolled in a printmaking class at Howard University, Washington, D.C., and it was here that he was introduced to silk-screening as a fine art by mentor James Lesesne Wells, receiving his B.F.A. in 1965. It is at Howard University that he studied with David C. Driskell. 

In 1968 Stovall founded Workshop Inc, a professional printmaking facility in Washington, D.C., through which he has been commissioned to print works by a number of artists including Elizabeth Catlett, David C. Driskell, and Jacob Lawrence. As a master printmaker, Stovall is known for challenging the limits of the silkscreen as a medium, using various tools and techniques to create new effects and personal touches. In his artwork, Stovall often depicts aspects of life and nature, emphasizing color, texture, and line. His nature pieces are sometimes created in a circular format to express the harmony and grace of nature.

Stovall’s work has exhibited across the country at such venues as the Strathmore Hall Arts Center, Bethesda, Md., 2004; African American Museum, Dallas, Texas, 2007; and Addison/Ripley Gallery, Washington, D.C., 2010. He has won numerous awards including the National Endowment for the Arts, Individual Artist Fellowship Grant, 1972; Washingtonian of the Year, 1979; the Fourth Annual Mayor’s Award for Excellence in an Artistic Discipline, Washington, D.C., 1985; and the Alumni Achievement Award from Howard University, 2001. In 2001, Stovall received an honorary doctorate from The Corcoran College of Art and Design, Washington, D.C.        



Franklin White

Franklin White Remembering David Driskell

"I am very pleased to be included in this exhibition honoring David Driskell. I was a student of his during the early 1960s at Howard University. Mr. Driskell was my painting teacher as well as my advisor and was a major contributor in my development as an artist. He was also very instrumental with his recommendation in my selection to attend the prestigious Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture in Maine, the summer of 1966. I remember how surprised and excited I was when he visited me there that summer to see how I was doing. I really appreciated his support. I feel that Mr. Driskell and Lois Mailou Jones had the strongest influence on my painting style during that period."


Selected Works: View Album of Artwork Here

Baston Del Emperador, oil pastel (2014)

Fish with carrot, green bean, flowers and radish, oil pastel (2013)

La Cucaracha, oil paper (2013)


About Franklin White

A native of Richmond, Va., Franklin White earned his B.F.A. and M.F.A. from Howard University, Washington D.C., where he studied under David C. Driskell. White is a retired professor, having taught at the Maryland College of Art and Design, Baltimore, Md.; Georgetown University, Washington, D.C.; and the Corcoran College of Art and Design, Washington D.C. White works out of studios in Washington, D.C. and Mérida, Venezuela.

White’s work is characterized by vibrantly rendered natural scenes featuring flowers, plants, and food. His work has been shown in exhibitions in Washington, D.C., Virginia, Louisiana, New York, and Venezuela. Additionally, his works are part of the collections of Howard University, Washington, D.C.; Colby College, Waterville, Maine; Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.; and Fort Lauderdale Museum, Fla.

Ernestina "Tina" Wyatt

Ernestina “Tina” Wyatt Remembering David Driskell

“I feel very fortunate to have known Dr. Driskell and more importantly to have benefited from his knowledge and expertise. Dr. Driskell was an inspirational human being on so many levels, as an African American man, artist, historian, and teacher. He was very approachable, allowing you to know him on a personal level, inviting you in to his home and to share the way he viewed the world and how he navigated it. Overall what he gave you were life lessons and how life affects your art, something more than you received from most instructors.”


Selected Works: View Album of Artwork Here

Chained, digital print with archival inks on German etching paper (2017)

Dead Mothers, Cigarettes and Shoes, acrylic mixed media (c. 2012)

They Call Me Mrs. Gibbs, acrylic mixed media (c. 2012)


About Ernestina “Tina” Wyatt

Ernestina “Tina” Martin Wyatt graduated from the University of Maryland, College Park, with a B.A. in art history and studio art. It is at the University of Maryland that she studied with David C. Driskell. She then went on to study and receive her M.A. from George Washington University, Washington, D.C., in museum studies.

“I still find myself emerging as an artist, often taking detours for study, family, and making a living. I continued to place my passion on the back burner still navigating my way in how and what I wanted to express. Raised in Buffalo, N.Y. I am now living in Washington, D.C. for the last thirty odd years. My acrylic paintings tend to be multi-layered narratives, often containing symbolism and quotes. I like to reflect on historical aspects of different eras to convey the story that inspires me and the many layers that life is made up of. I collect materials, and together I create a story. Within this context, I have weaved together a story through layering a combination of paint and mixed-media; collaging and often juxtaposing historical documents, letters, old photos and other found objects, paper and printed material. These days I find my inspiration in my ancestor, Harriet Ross Tubman and the long, long maternal line of strong, determined women that has given me a strong sense of family and faith.”

Sophia Zarambouka


Sophia Zarambouka Remembering David Driskell

“We were probably from the very first [class, at Howard], because he was so young. I was looking in a drawing of mine done at the spot in the 1963 demonstration [in Washington, DC] where we all participated, and since then it remains ‘a dream’; what a pity.”

1963 Washington Demonstration Sketch
David C. Driskell celebrating his 82nd birthday in Athens, Greece.
David C. Driskell celebrating his 82nd birthday in Athens, Greece, at Sophia Zarambouka's home.


Selected Works: View Album of Artwork Here

Greek Revolution 1821, digital (2020)

Secu Monastery, digital (2020)

Demanding a Constitution, digital (2020)


About Sophia Zarambouka

Sophia Zarambouka has been writing and illustrating children’s books for 45 years, and has created whole collections of books, most of them based on the cultural heritage that ancient Greeks left to the world. Zarambouka received her B.F.A. from Howard University, Washington, D.C., where she studied art with David C. Driskell.

Her first children’s book, “In The Forest,” was published in 1975; it attempts to explain the meaning of dictatorship to children. Since then, she has created 80 books for children, where she discusses current topics, even when employing stories from ancient Greek literature.

Her work is simultaneously entertaining and teasing, inspirational and informative.

Outside Greece, Zarambouka’s books have been published in Denmark, Sweden, Norway, the U.S.  (Getty Museum Publications editions), China, Japan, Germany, and Hungary. Her original artwork has been exhibited in many personal and group exhibitions in Greece and all over the world.

She has received many awards, among which is the Prize of the Academy of Athens, Greece, for her contribution to the field. For her, the most important of all distinctions is the fact that many generations of children have adored her books, which she never stops bringing in modern form.

Virtual exhibition designed by Aryn G. Neurock Schriner.