James Baldwin(1924-1987), Writer and critic
James Arthur Baldwin
Sitter in 1 portrait
Born in Harlem, Baldwin was brought up in New York by his mother and stepfather, a church minister. At the age of thirteen, he wrote Harlem - Then and Now, his first article for his school magazine. On his nineteenth birthday in 1943, he witnessed the Harlem race riots which were to feature in his essay Notes of a Native Son. His works include Remember This House which was adapted for cinema as the Academy Award-nominated documentary film I Am Not Your Negro. Many of Baldwin's fictional works, including his second novel Giovanni's Room (1956), daringly explored personal questions and dilemmas concerning race, sexual orientation, class and integration, making him an important and influential voice in American literature.
View a wide collection of video content on our YouTube channel from past projects to our latest films.
Artist and sitter interviews
Get insights into creating portraiture from BP Portrait Award 2020 artists and their sitters.
Watch our film created to say ‘goodbye’ to the Gallery before we closed for our major transformation project.