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Elizabeth Catlett Art

American, 1915-2012

Promoting social change was Elizabeth Catlett’s prime motivation as an artist. The granddaughter of enslaved people, Catlett was born in Washington, D.C., in 1915 and spent her adult life driven to create sculptures, prints and paintings that would reach, celebrate and uplift those who were barely visible in art.

“I have always wanted my art to service Black people — to reflect us, to relate to us, to stimulate us, to make us aware of our potential,” Catlett said of her work in the 1978 book Art: African American. She studied art history, drawing and other disciplines at Howard University, and as an MFA student at the University of Iowa, her mentor, the painter Grant Wood, advised her to “take as her subject what she knew best.” As she later told an interviewer, “The thing that I knew the most about was Black women, because I am one, and I lived with them all my life, so that’s what I started working with.”

The centerpiece of Catlett’s spring 1940 thesis project, Negro Mother and Child — a figure of a Black mother embracing her child, carved from Indiana limestone — was awarded first place for sculpture at the American Negro Exposition in Chicago held that year.

Catlett taught art at Dillard University in New Orleans — where she battled discrimination daily — and met her first husband, artist Charles White, while living in Chicago. She resigned from Dillard in 1942 and moved to New York City. There Catlett befriended painter Jacob Lawrence and studied lithography and other media at the Art Students League. Inspired by her studies with Ossip Zadkine, she began to incorporate abstract forms into her wood and stone sculptures.

In 1946, a grant supported her travel to Mexico to study its murals and graphic art. As Catlett had experienced the barbaric and deeply destructive system of racial segregation that the Jim Crow laws enforced in the United States, Mexico felt like a welcome escape. She would make the country her home and create much of her work there, divorcing White and marrying painter and printmaker Francisco Mora of the Taller de Gráfica Popular (People's Graphic Workshop), or TGP, in 1947. She collaborated with TGP, a graphic arts workshop dedicated to social issues located in Mexico City, on a number of works, including one of her best-known linoleum cut prints, Sharecropper (1952). The heroic depiction of an anonymous farm worker was intended to draw attention to the plight of Black tenant farmers who were ruthlessly exploited by the era’s white landowners.

Another iconic work of Catlett’s is Black Unity (1968), a raised fist sculpted from cedar, smooth and gleaming, with one side taking the form of two faces that resemble carved African masks. In the same year, the raised fist, a powerful symbol of the Civil Rights struggle and emblem of the Black Power movement, had been immortalized by two Black American athletes, John Carlos and Tommie Smith, who raised their black-gloved fists during the playing of the “Star-Spangled Banner” at the Summer Olympics in Mexico City.

Catlett was a professor of sculpture at the National Autonomous University of Mexico’s School of Fine Arts in Mexico City from 1958 until 1976, when she retired to focus on making art, exhibiting extensively in the years that followed. In 2003, she completed the Ralph Ellison Memorial in New York’s Riverside Park. That same year she received a lifetime achievement award from the International Sculpture Center. Her work is in the collections of museums worldwide, including the Smithsonian American Art Museum, Museum of Modern Art and the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Find a range of authentic Elizabeth Catlett art today on 1stDibs.

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Artist: Elizabeth Catlett
KEISHA M. Hand Drawn Lithograph, Young Black Female Portrait, Afro Hairstyle
By Elizabeth Catlett
Located in Union City, NJ
KEISHA M. is an original hand drawn, limited edition lithograph by the renowned African-American woman sculptor, printmaker and painter Elizabeth Catlett (1915-2012), printed using h...
Category

Early 2000s Contemporary Elizabeth Catlett Art

Materials

Lithograph

GLORY Signed Linocut, Black Woman Portrait, White Line Drawing, Brown Taupe
By Elizabeth Catlett
Located in Union City, NJ
GLORY is a hand pulled original limited edition relief print by the American and Mexican woman artist, printmaker and sculptor, Elizabeth Catlett. GLORY was created using linocut pri...
Category

Early 2000s Contemporary Elizabeth Catlett Art

Materials

Linocut

Elizabeth Catlett 1st State Early Edition. "Black is Beautiful"
By Elizabeth Catlett
Located in San Francisco, CA
Elizabeth Catlett: 1915-2012. Well listed and very important African American artist. This lithograph is usually titled Negro es Bello or Black is Beautiful, but this is very first s...
Category

1960s Elizabeth Catlett Art

Materials

Lithograph

THE DOOR OF JUSTICE Signed Lithograph, Lawyers, People's Rights Social Justice
By Elizabeth Catlett
Located in Union City, NJ
THE DOOR OF JUSTICE is an original, hand drawn, limited edition lithograph by the highly acclaimed African-American woman artist Elizabeth Catlett, master printmaker and sculptor bes...
Category

Early 2000s Contemporary Elizabeth Catlett Art

Materials

Lithograph

NEGRO ES BELLO II Signed Lithograph, Black Is Beautiful, Black Power Movement
By Elizabeth Catlett
Located in Union City, NJ
NEGRO ES BELLO II is an original limited edition lithograph created by the African-American woman printmaker and sculptor, Elizabeth Catlett using hand printmaking techniques on arch...
Category

Early 2000s Contemporary Elizabeth Catlett Art

Materials

Lithograph

HOMAGE TO THE PANTHERS Signed Lithograph Portrait Black Power Movement, Activism
By Elizabeth Catlett
Located in Union City, NJ
HOMAGE TO THE PANTHERS is an original limited edition lithograph created using hand printmaking techniques on white archival fine art paper, 100% acid free. Pencil signed, titled, da...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Contemporary Elizabeth Catlett Art

Materials

Lithograph

Survivor — African American artist
By Elizabeth Catlett
Located in Myrtle Beach, SC
Elizabeth Catlett, 'Survivor', linocut, 1983, edition 1000. Signed, titled, dated, and numbered '582/1000' in pencil. A fine impression, on heavy, cream wove paper, with full margins...
Category

1980s American Modern Elizabeth Catlett Art

Materials

Linocut

VENDEDORA Signed Lithograph, Portrait Seated Young Girl, Mexican Fruit Seller
By Elizabeth Catlett
Located in Union City, NJ
VENDEDORA, a limited edition lithograph by the renowned American-born Mexican sculptor and printmaker Elizabeth Catlett(b.1915–2012) depicts a sensitive black and white portrait of a...
Category

Early 2000s Realist Elizabeth Catlett Art

Materials

Lithograph

THE DOOR OF JUSTICE Signed Color Lithograph, Lawyer and Clients, Civil Rights
By Elizabeth Catlett
Located in Union City, NJ
THE DOOR OF JUSTICE is an original, hand drawn, limited edition lithograph by the highly acclaimed African-American woman artist Elizabeth Catlett, master printmaker and sculptor bes...
Category

Early 2000s Contemporary Elizabeth Catlett Art

Materials

Lithograph

CHILDREN WITH FLOWERS Signed Lithograph, Multicultural Portrait, Fabric Collage
By Elizabeth Catlett
Located in Union City, NJ
Elizabeth Catlett - CHILDREN WITH FLOWERS 1995, limited edition lithograph printed in twelve colors using traditional hand lithography techniques on archival Arches paper, 100% acid ...
Category

1990s Contemporary Elizabeth Catlett Art

Materials

Lithograph

AFRICAN AMERICAN WOMAN(Turban), Hand Drawn Lithograph, Black Female Portrait
By Elizabeth Catlett
Located in Union City, NJ
AFRICAN AMERICAN WOMAN is an original hand drawn, limited edition lithograph by the renowned African American woman artist Elizabeth Catlett, printed in light black ink on archival c...
Category

Early 2000s Contemporary Elizabeth Catlett Art

Materials

Lithograph

SECOND GENERATION Signed Lithograph, For My People by Margaret Walker, Protest
By Elizabeth Catlett
Located in Union City, NJ
SECOND GENERATION is an original hand drawn limited edition lithograph by the highly acclaimed African-American woman artist Elizabeth Catlett, master printmaker and sculptor best kn...
Category

1990s Contemporary Elizabeth Catlett Art

Materials

Lithograph

TO MARRY Signed Lithograph, For My People by Margaret Walker, Bride and Groom
By Elizabeth Catlett
Located in Union City, NJ
TO MARRY is an original hand drawn limited edition lithograph by the highly acclaimed African-American woman artist Elizabeth Catlett, master printmaker and sculptor best known for h...
Category

1990s Contemporary Elizabeth Catlett Art

Materials

Lithograph

MAN Signed Woodcut, Indigenous Portrait Head, Mexican Culture
By Elizabeth Catlett
Located in Union City, NJ
MAN is a hand pulled, original limited edition relief print created using woodcut and serigraphy(silkscreen) printmaking techniques on white archival heavyweight paper, 100% acid fr...
Category

Early 2000s Contemporary Elizabeth Catlett Art

Materials

Woodcut

BREAD Signed Linocut, Black and White Portrait, Mexican Girl Braided Hair
By Elizabeth Catlett
Located in Union City, NJ
BREAD (Derecho Alimentarse) The Right To Eat, created by the African-American woman printmaker and sculptor, Elizabeth Catlett. BREAD is a realistic linoleum cut portrait depicting ...
Category

1960s Contemporary Elizabeth Catlett Art

Materials

Linocut

WALKING BLINDLY Signed Lithograph, Black Woman, For My People by Margaret Walker
By Elizabeth Catlett
Located in Union City, NJ
WALKING BLINDLY is an original hand drawn limited edition lithograph by the highly acclaimed African-American woman artist Elizabeth Catlett, master printmaker and sculptor best know...
Category

1990s Contemporary Elizabeth Catlett Art

Materials

Lithograph

ALL THE PEOPLE Signed Lithograph, For My People-Margaret Walker, Rainbow Faces
By Elizabeth Catlett
Located in Union City, NJ
ALL THE PEOPLE is an original hand drawn limited edition lithograph by the highly acclaimed African-American woman artist Elizabeth Catlett, master printmaker and sculptor best known...
Category

1990s Contemporary Elizabeth Catlett Art

Materials

Lithograph

NEW GENERATION Signed Lithograph, Black Father Holding Son, Family Portrait
By Elizabeth Catlett
Located in Union City, NJ
NEW GENERATION is a hand drawn, limited edition lithograph printed using hand lithography techniques on archival Arches paper, 10% acid free, by the renowned African American woman a...
Category

1990s Contemporary Elizabeth Catlett Art

Materials

Lithograph

YOUNG DOUGLASS Signed Linocut Black and White Portrait African American History
By Elizabeth Catlett
Located in Union City, NJ
YOUNG DOUGLASS is a hand pulled original limited edition relief print created using linocut printmaking techniques on white archival Somerset White paper, 100% acid free. Pencil sign...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Contemporary Elizabeth Catlett Art

Materials

Linocut

DANCING II, Signed Lithograph, Black and White Dance Portrait, Black Culture
By Elizabeth Catlett
Located in Union City, NJ
DANCING II is an original limited edition lithograph printed in black ink on white archival printmaking paper using hand lithography techniques, hand deckled print edges, embossed wi...
Category

Early 2000s Contemporary Elizabeth Catlett Art

Materials

Lithograph

SINGING THEIR SONGS Signed Lithograph, For My People by Margaret Walker
By Elizabeth Catlett
Located in Union City, NJ
SINGING THEIR SONGS is an original hand drawn limited edition lithograph by the highly acclaimed African-American woman artist Elizabeth Catlett, master printmaker and sculptor best ...
Category

1990s Contemporary Elizabeth Catlett Art

Materials

Lithograph

CANDACE 1992 Tribute To African American Women, Commemorative Black Art Poster
By Elizabeth Catlett
Located in Union City, NJ
ELIZABETH CATLETT Candace - 10th Anniversary Celebration 1992, A Tribute to African American Women National Coalition of 100 Black Women, Commemorative Art Poster Year printed - 19...
Category

1990s Contemporary Elizabeth Catlett Art

Materials

Lithograph

Rebozos
By Elizabeth Catlett
Located in Westport, CT
Lithograph, signed, titled, numbered and dated ’68 in pencil. Numbered 15/50. Limited edition print by icon of the 20th Century, Elizabeth Catlett.
Category

20th Century Modern Elizabeth Catlett Art

Materials

Lithograph

VENDEDORA DE PERIODICAS Signed Lithograph, Mexican Woman Newspaper Vendor
By Elizabeth Catlett
Located in Union City, NJ
VENDEDORA DE PERIODICAS is a limited edition lithograph by the acclaimed African American woman artist, sculptor and printmaker, Elizabeth Catlett (April 15, 1915 - April 2, 2012) p...
Category

2010s Realist Elizabeth Catlett Art

Materials

Lithograph

MALCOLM X SPEAKS FOR US Signed Linocut Portrait Head Black Civil Rights Activist
By Elizabeth Catlett
Located in Union City, NJ
MALCOLM X SPEAKS FOR US is a hand pulled, original limited edition relief print created using linocut printmaking techniques on white archival heavyweight Somerset paper 500 gsm., 10...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Contemporary Elizabeth Catlett Art

Materials

Linocut

Man
By Elizabeth Catlett
Located in Missouri, MO
Elizabeth Catlett “Man” 1975 (The Print Club of Cleveland Publication Number 83, 2005) Woodcut and Color Linocut Printed in 2003 at JK Fine Art Editions Co., Union City, New Jersey S...
Category

Late 19th Century American Modern Elizabeth Catlett Art

Materials

Linocut, Woodcut

Related Items
NEW GENERATION Signed Lithograph, Black Father Holding Son, Family Portrait
By Elizabeth Catlett
Located in Union City, NJ
NEW GENERATION is a hand drawn, limited edition lithograph printed using hand lithography techniques on archival Arches paper, 10% acid free, by the renowned African American woman a...
Category

1990s Contemporary Elizabeth Catlett Art

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Lithograph

DANCING II, Signed Lithograph, Black and White Dance Portrait, Black Culture
By Elizabeth Catlett
Located in Union City, NJ
DANCING II is an original limited edition lithograph printed in black ink on white archival printmaking paper using hand lithography techniques, hand deckled print edges, embossed wi...
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Early 2000s Contemporary Elizabeth Catlett Art

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WALKING BLINDLY Signed Lithograph, Black Woman, For My People by Margaret Walker
By Elizabeth Catlett
Located in Union City, NJ
WALKING BLINDLY is an original hand drawn limited edition lithograph by the highly acclaimed African-American woman artist Elizabeth Catlett, master printmaker and sculptor best know...
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1990s Contemporary Elizabeth Catlett Art

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SECOND GENERATION Signed Lithograph, For My People by Margaret Walker, Protest
By Elizabeth Catlett
Located in Union City, NJ
SECOND GENERATION is an original hand drawn limited edition lithograph by the highly acclaimed African-American woman artist Elizabeth Catlett, master printmaker and sculptor best kn...
Category

1990s Contemporary Elizabeth Catlett Art

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Lithograph

TO MARRY Signed Lithograph, For My People by Margaret Walker, Bride and Groom
By Elizabeth Catlett
Located in Union City, NJ
TO MARRY is an original hand drawn limited edition lithograph by the highly acclaimed African-American woman artist Elizabeth Catlett, master printmaker and sculptor best known for h...
Category

1990s Contemporary Elizabeth Catlett Art

Materials

Lithograph

CHILDREN WITH FLOWERS Signed Lithograph, Multicultural Portrait, Fabric Collage
By Elizabeth Catlett
Located in Union City, NJ
Elizabeth Catlett - CHILDREN WITH FLOWERS 1995, limited edition lithograph printed in twelve colors using traditional hand lithography techniques on archival Arches paper, 100% acid ...
Category

1990s Contemporary Elizabeth Catlett Art

Materials

Lithograph

SINGING THEIR SONGS Signed Lithograph, For My People by Margaret Walker
By Elizabeth Catlett
Located in Union City, NJ
SINGING THEIR SONGS is an original hand drawn limited edition lithograph by the highly acclaimed African-American woman artist Elizabeth Catlett, master printmaker and sculptor best ...
Category

1990s Contemporary Elizabeth Catlett Art

Materials

Lithograph

AFRICAN AMERICAN WOMAN(Turban), Hand Drawn Lithograph, Black Female Portrait
By Elizabeth Catlett
Located in Union City, NJ
AFRICAN AMERICAN WOMAN is an original hand drawn, limited edition lithograph by the renowned African American woman artist Elizabeth Catlett, printed in light black ink on archival c...
Category

Early 2000s Contemporary Elizabeth Catlett Art

Materials

Lithograph

VENDEDORA DE PERIODICAS Signed Lithograph, Mexican Woman Newspaper Vendor
By Elizabeth Catlett
Located in Union City, NJ
VENDEDORA DE PERIODICAS is a limited edition lithograph by the acclaimed African American woman artist, sculptor and printmaker, Elizabeth Catlett (April 15, 1915 - April 2, 2012) p...
Category

2010s Realist Elizabeth Catlett Art

Materials

Lithograph

VENDEDORA Signed Lithograph, Portrait Seated Young Girl, Mexican Fruit Seller
By Elizabeth Catlett
Located in Union City, NJ
VENDEDORA, a limited edition lithograph by the renowned American-born Mexican sculptor and printmaker Elizabeth Catlett(b.1915–2012) depicts a sensitive black and white portrait of a...
Category

Early 2000s Realist Elizabeth Catlett Art

Materials

Lithograph

MAN Signed Woodcut, Indigenous Portrait Head, Mexican Culture
By Elizabeth Catlett
Located in Union City, NJ
MAN is a hand pulled, original limited edition relief print created using woodcut and serigraphy(silkscreen) printmaking techniques on white archival heavyweight paper, 100% acid fr...
Category

Early 2000s Contemporary Elizabeth Catlett Art

Materials

Woodcut

BREAD Signed Linocut, Black and White Portrait, Mexican Girl Braided Hair
By Elizabeth Catlett
Located in Union City, NJ
BREAD (Derecho Alimentarse) The Right To Eat, created by the African-American woman printmaker and sculptor, Elizabeth Catlett. BREAD is a realistic linoleum cut portrait depicting ...
Category

1960s Contemporary Elizabeth Catlett Art

Materials

Linocut

Previously Available Items
PLAYMATES Signed Lithograph, For My People by Margaret Walker, Black Children
By Elizabeth Catlett
Located in Union City, NJ
PLAYMATES is an original hand drawn limited edition lithograph by the highly acclaimed African-American woman artist Elizabeth Catlett, master printmaker and sculptor best known for ...
Category

1990s Contemporary Elizabeth Catlett Art

Materials

Lithograph

Campesino Mexicano — African American artist
By Elizabeth Catlett
Located in Myrtle Beach, SC
Elizabeth Catlett, 'Campesino Mexicano', linocut, c. 1947, edition not stated, but small. Signed 'E Catlett' in pencil. Titled in pencil and annotated '18 x 13' (cm) and '47' (circle...
Category

1940s American Modern Elizabeth Catlett Art

Materials

Linocut

GLORY Signed Linocut, Black Woman Portrait, White Line Drawing, Brown Taupe
By Elizabeth Catlett
Located in Union City, NJ
GLORY is a hand pulled original limited edition relief print by the American and Mexican woman artist, printmaker and sculptor, Elizabeth Catlett. GLORY was created using linocut pri...
Category

Early 2000s Contemporary Elizabeth Catlett Art

Materials

Linocut

NEGRO ES BELLO II Signed Lithograph, Black Is Beautiful, Black Panther Logo
By Elizabeth Catlett
Located in Union City, NJ
NEGRO ES BELLO II is an original limited edition lithograph created using hand printmaking techniques on archival paper, 100% acid free. Pencil signed, titled, dated by Ms. Catlett o...
Category

Early 2000s Contemporary Elizabeth Catlett Art

Materials

Lithograph

MALCOLM X SPEAKS FOR US, Signed Linocut, African American Civil Rights Activist
By Elizabeth Catlett
Located in Union City, NJ
MALCOLM X SPEAKS FOR US is a hand pulled, original limited edition relief print created using linocut printmaking techniques on white archival heavyweight Somerset paper 500 gsm., 10...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Contemporary Elizabeth Catlett Art

Materials

Linocut

VENDEDORA Signed Lithograph, Portrait Seated Young Girl, Mexican Fruit Seller
By Elizabeth Catlett
Located in Union City, NJ
VENDEDORA, a limited edition lithograph by the renowned American-born Mexican sculptor and printmaker Elizabeth Catlett(b.1915–2012) depicts a sensitive black and white portrait of a...
Category

Early 2000s Realist Elizabeth Catlett Art

Materials

Lithograph

AFRICAN AMERICAN WOMAN(Turban), Hand Drawn Lithograph, Black Female Portrait
By Elizabeth Catlett
Located in Union City, NJ
AFRICAN AMERICAN WOMAN is an original hand drawn, limited edition lithograph by the renowned African American woman artist Elizabeth Catlett, printed in light black ink on archival c...
Category

Early 2000s Contemporary Elizabeth Catlett Art

Materials

Lithograph

YOUNG DOUGLASS Signed Linocut Black and White Portrait African American History
By Elizabeth Catlett
Located in Union City, NJ
YOUNG DOUGLASS is a hand pulled original limited edition relief print created using linocut printmaking techniques on white archival Somerset White paper, 100% acid free. Pencil sign...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Contemporary Elizabeth Catlett Art

Materials

Linocut

Survivor
By Elizabeth Catlett
Located in Myrtle Beach, SC
Elizabeth Catlett, 'Survivor', linocut, 1983, edition 1000. Signed, titled, dated, and numbered '538/1000' in pencil. A fine impression, on heavy, cream wove paper, with margins ( 1/...
Category

1980s American Modern Elizabeth Catlett Art

Materials

Linocut

  • Survivor
  • Survivor
  • Survivor
  • Survivor
H 9.38 in. W 7.44 in.
Survivor
By Elizabeth Catlett
Located in Myrtle Beach, SC
Elizabeth Catlett, 'Survivor', linocut, 1983, edition 1000. Signed, titled, dated, and numbered '908/1000' in pencil. A fine impression, on heavy, cream wove paper, with margins ( 1/...
Category

1980s American Modern Elizabeth Catlett Art

Materials

Linocut

  • Survivor
  • Survivor
  • Survivor
  • Survivor
H 9.38 in. W 7.44 in.
MAN Signed Woodcut, Indigenous Portrait Head, Mexican Culture
By Elizabeth Catlett
Located in Union City, NJ
MAN is a hand pulled, original limited edition relief print created using woodcut and serigraphy(silkscreen) printmaking techniques on white archival heavyweight paper, 100% acid fr...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Contemporary Elizabeth Catlett Art

Materials

Woodcut

MAN, Signed Woodcut, Indigenous Portrait Head, Mexican Culture
By Elizabeth Catlett
Located in Union City, NJ
MAN is a hand pulled, original limited edition relief print created using woodcut and serigraphy(silkscreen) printmaking techniques on white archival heavyweight paper, 100% acid fr...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Contemporary Elizabeth Catlett Art

Materials

Woodcut

Elizabeth Catlett art for sale on 1stDibs

1stDibs offers a wide variety of authentic Elizabeth Catlett art for sale. If you're looking for art to add a pop of color to a neutral corner of your living room or bedroom, you can find work that includes elements of blue, orange and other colors. You can also browse by medium to find Elizabeth Catlett's art in lithograph, linocut, woodcut print and more. Much of this artist's original work was created during the 21st Century and Contemporary, and is mostly associated with the Contemporary style. Not every interior allows for large Elizabeth Catlett art, so small editions measuring 5.25 inches across are available. Customers interested in this artist might also find the work of Charles Bragg, Eve Stockton and Art Werger. The art of Elizabeth Catlett can vary depending upon medium, time period and other attributes. On 1stDibs, the price for these items starts at $360 and tops out at $8,500, while the average work can sell for $3,550.

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