Accession Number


Jacob Lawrence

Object Creation Date

Medium & Support
tempera over black colored pencil on wood board

19 13/16 in x 24 in (50.32 cm x 60.96 cm);18 1/8 in x 9 3/8 in (46.04 cm x 23.81 cm)

Credit Line
Gift of Dr. James and Vivian Curtis

Subject matter
Jacob Lawrence drew upon his surroundings in Harlem, NY for influence and inspiration. His work often contains people in the African American community and their struggles, dreams and triumphs. “Champions” depicts a portrait of an African American basketball team resplendent with their five trophies. The schematic designs, flat space, angular figures, and fragmented, highly patterned surfaces of this piece are typical of his style.

Physical Description
Eight male figures (three kneeling in front and five standing in back) wearing orange tank tops and white shorts face the viewer; two basketballs and five trophies between figures in the foreground. Figures stand in front of a background of fragmented, arched and circular areas of color in blues and golds.

Primary Object Classification

Primary Object Type

Collection Area
Modern and Contemporary

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Abstract (fine arts style)
African American
basketball (court ball games)
basketballs (balls)
figures (representations)
modern and contemporary art
trophies (objects)

45 Related Resources

Athletes and Sports
(Part of 10 Learning Collections)
Race, Gender, Class, and American Identity
(Part of 11 Learning Collections)
The Human Body, a survey
(Part of 2 Learning Collections)
School and Education in the U.S.
(Part of 10 Learning Collections)
Artists of the Harlem Renaissance
(Part of 13 Learning Collections)
New Hope
(Part of 3 Learning Collections)
Who Are We? 
(Part of: I.B. Units of Inquiry)
SU19 - Gunning: CSP 100 Seminar Readings
(Part of: Resources Made by Isabel Engel)
F19 - Ypsilanti Community Alternative High School
(Part of: Resources Made by Isabel Engel)
F19 Zaborowska - AAS 558 / AMCULT 601 - Black Digital Studies
(Part of: Examples of Past Course Collections)
Student Curatorial Project: African-American artists in UMMA's collection
(Part of: W21 and W22 Ellsworth - AAS 290 - The Tulsa Race Massacre)
U.S. Afrofuturisms
(Part of: F20 Boisseron - AAS 271 / ENGLISH 274 - Afrofuturisms presents and pasts)

& Author Notes

All Rights Reserved

On display

UMMA Gallery Location ➜ FFW, 2nd floor ➜ 218 (Eleanor Noyes Crumpacker)