Vivian Schuyler Key Vintage Oil Painting

Regular price $ 295.00


  • Vintage item

This lovely signed painting was created by Vivian Schuyler Key (American, 1905–1990), the first African American female to graduate with a Fine Arts degree from Pratt Institute (1923). She established herself as a painter and sculptor during the Harlem Renaissance cultural movement. An illustrator for The Crisis Magazine of the NAACP, Key was one of only 49 artists included in the first exhibit of art created by African American women at Illinois State University in 1981. She is the subject of a 1990 book entitled, "Vivian Schuyler Key: One of Many Voices, 1926-1980" by Crystal Britton. Mrs. Key painted a portrait of W.E.B. Du Bois and corresponded with him in the 1960's. Her work was featured in the 2012 exhibit entitled "Vivian Schuyler Key: Artist of the Harlem Renaissance and Beyond" at the Hammonds House Museum in Atlanta, Georgia. We've included a black and white photograph of Mrs. Key at her easel and also her 1924 Hempstead, Long Island High School yearbook listing, which predicted a great future for her as an artist.

The painting has a paper tag on the back stating "This is a Genuine Oil Painting painted entirely by hand. The artists (sic) name is V.S. Key {note: the name is written in ink by hand} Art Associates--New York City." It depicts a mixed bouquet of pink, yellow and blue flowers with green foliage set against a shaded, pale beige ground. Done on artists' board, it's signed 'Key' in red to the lower left.

Actual size of the painting is 8 inches by 6 inches; framed size is 11 inches by 9 inches and it projects 1 3/4 inches from the wall. The concave warm brown walnut frame has a gilt liner; overall, it's in very good condition, with a few dents to the wood but no color loss or corner separations. The original dust paper on the reverse is intact and there is a small round metal hanger affixed to the upper edge of the frame. The painting itself is in excellent condition and displays beautifully.

This painting, created mid-century by an eminent listed American artist, is a wonderful find.


PYH 4717