Yellow Interior

Accession Number
2002/1.197

Title
Yellow Interior

Artist(s)
Blanch Ackers

Object Creation Date
1987-2000

Medium & Support
marker, black ink, paper collage, crayon, graphite on white wove paper

Dimensions
12 1/16 in. x 17 15/16 in. ( 30.6 cm x 45.6 cm )

Credit Line
Gift of The Daniel and Harriet Fusfeld Folk Art Collection

Label copy
Blanch Ackers
United States, born 1916
Yellow Interior
1987–2000
Graphite, crayon, ink, marker, and paper collage on paper
Gift of the Daniel and Harriet Fusfeld Folk Art Collection, 2002/1.197
Ackers, who served as a foster grandparent at Ypsilanti’s Ford Elementary School, was introduced to watercolor painting through the school’s arts activities. In the 1940s, Ackers had moved to the Detroit area with a brother as part of the Great Migration, the mass movement of African Americans from the fields of the American South to the industrial areas of the North in search of employment. Many of Ackers’s images, like Yellow Interior and Homestead (in an adjacent drawer), recall her childhood in rural Arkansas.
(Out of the Ordinary, 2010)
The daughter of a poor Arkansas sharecropper, Ackers moved to the Detroit, Michigan area in 1943 to work in a wartime factory, and then to Ypsilanti, Michigan where she has lived ever since. In 1985, Ackers began to work in the Willow Run School District as part of the Foster Grandparent Program run by Child and Family Services. While working at Ford Elementary School in Ypsilanti, Michigan, Ackers was introduced to drawing and watercolor painting by Christine Hennessy, an art teacher.
Yellow Interior depicts a cheerful schoolroom. This scene was most likely chosen as a subject because it was familiar to Ackers. Many self-taught artists like Ackers produce works that depict personal experiences and memories, often meticulously and decoratively detailed. These details can be seen in the figures’ faces and clothing as well as the ceiling lights, tiled floor, wall clock and decorative wall covering.
Lindsay Meehan
Modern and Contemporary Art Intern
2002

Primary Object Classification
Drawing

Primary Object Type
portrait

Rights
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Keywords
Figures
clock
pitcher
seated
standing
table
yellow

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& Author Notes

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