U.S. Postal Service issuing Edmonia Lewis Black Heritage Forever stamp


The 45th stamp in the Black Heritage series pays tribute to Edmonia Lewis, the first African-American and Native American sculptor to achieve international recognition. The stamp art is a casein portrait based on a photograph of Lewis by Augustus Marshall taken in Boston between 1864 and 1871.

The Edmonia Lewis stamp will be issued in vouchers of 20.

The Edmonia Lewis Forever Stamp Day 1 event is free and open to the public. Stamp news is shared with hashtags #EdmoniaLewis and #BlackHeritageStamps.

As the first African-American and Native American sculptor to achieve international recognition, Edmonia Lewis challenged social barriers and assumptions about artists in mid-19th century America.

Born in Greenbush, NY, Lewis has spent most of her career in Rome, where her studio has become a must-see attraction for American tourists. In addition to busts of prominent figures, Lewis’s work incorporated African American themes, including the celebration of newly acquired freedoms, and sensitively portray his Native American heritage as peaceful and dignified.

A Roman Catholic, Lewis also received several religious commissions. The work she has produced during her prolific career evokes the complexity of her social identity and reflects the passion and independence of her artistic vision.

As audiences continue to discover the beautiful intricacies of Lewis’s work, scholars will further interpret her role in American art and the ways in which she explored, affirmed or emphasized her complex cultural identity to meet or expand upon them. artistic expectations of his time.

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