For this assignment we were to incorporate fonts and use type to convey information as well as be used for aesthetic design. I chose a font that had an element of design from the late 19th-early 20th centuries.
“Some praise me because I am a colored girl, and I don’t want that kind of praise. I had rather you point out my defects, for that will teach me something.” - Edmonia Lewis
Mary Edmonia Lewis was an American-born neoclassical sculptor in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. At the age of 15, she was sent by her brother to attend Oberlin College.
Upon leaving Oberlin College she went to Boston where she began her career as a sculptor. Beginning her career in Boston not only allowed a place to sculpt, but also a safe space among people who were eager for Native and African Americans to succeed in various fields.
Lewis was well aware of the difference between false praise and support and in an interview stated, “Some praise me because I am a colored girl, and I don’t want that kind of praise. I had rather you point out my defects, for that will teach me something.”Eventually Edmonia Lewis made her way to Rome she continued to sculpt, in the neoclassical tradition, subjects of slavery, emancipation, and Native Americans. Her career has often been underexplored but the interest in women artist has uncovered her career once again.
1. Kristen Pai Buick. Child of the Fire: Mary Edmonia Lewis and the Problem of Art History’s Black and Indian Subject (Durham: Duke University Press, 2010): 5.
2. “Interview with Lydia Maria Child.” Liberator, February 19, 1864.