Brunk Auctions
Live Auction

Modern + Design Auction | April 11, 2024

Thu, Apr 11, 2024 10:00AM EDT
Lot 561

Calvin Waller Burnett, Freedom Fighter

Estimate: $800 - $1,200

Bid Increments

Price Bid Increment
$0 $25
$100 $50
$1,000 $100
$2,000 $200
$3,000 $250
$5,000 $500
$10,000 $1,000
$20,000 $2,000
$50,000 $5,000
$100,000 $10,000

(Massachusetts, 1921-2007)

for Operation Exodus, 1969, edition 33/100, signed lower right "Calvin Burnett", titled, annotated, lithograph on ivory paper, 35-5/8 x 25-3/8 in.; modern black frame, 41-3/8 x 31-1/4 x 1-1/4 in.

Provenance: Property of a Southern Museum sold to benefit the Acquisition Fund

Note: "The title of this print, Freedom Fighter, for Operation Exodus, refers to the community-led program that was established in the mid-1960s by concerned parents looking to bus African American children from lower income neighborhoods to recently desegregated, predominantly white schools in the Boston area. By 1969, Operation Exodus provided a higher quality education to nearly 1,000 students, which also included access to tutoring, textbooks, counseling services, and vocational training programs within the community.  Burnett, an African American artist and educator, made this print to raise funds in support of the initiative. At the time he made this lithograph he was an art professor at his alma mater, the Massachusetts College of Art. His teachings and theories on color can often be read as a poignant social commentary of the times: '…there is no such thing as a good color or bad color or a correct color combination; it's only what you're trying to express with the color and what it's all about.'" -The Madison Museum of Contemporary Art 


some faint waviness to paper, not examined out of frame

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Property of a Southern Museum sold to benefit the Acquisition Fund