African American Artist William Tolliver Dead at 49

Article excerpt

SPECIAL REPORT--William Tolliver, a contemporary painter of African American art, died Sept. 1 at the age of 49--but not before leaving an indelible mark on the art world.

Tolliver emerged as a professional artist in the 1980s. His versatile and exuberant style captured the attention of galleries and collectors across the United States and more than 700 of his paintings sold in three years. In part because of the high demand and sale of his work, the African American art market flourished to a greater height during this time.

Tolliver has exhibited in the rotunda of the United States Senate Building and is featured in museum collections such as the Corcoran Museum in Washington, D.C., The New Orleans Museum of Art and the Hampton University Museum in Hampton, Va.

He has also been featured in major art publications, including The Art Gallery International and The International Review of African American Art.

Tolliver is best known for his creative depiction of cotton field workers, country landscapes, jazz musicians and character studies worked in abstractions and impressionism. …