Save the Date: The Highwaymen Exhibit

Discover The Last Great Art Movement of the 20th Century and a Uniquely Florida Exhibition presented exclusively for Riverland.

In the 1960s, a group of young, Black Americans barely out of high school, taught themselves to paint as a way to earn a decent living and escape the underpaid labor in the citrus groves and packinghouses of the segregated, Jim Crow South. With no money for proper supplies, they painted using left-over construction material called Upson board, house paint and frames made from pieces of floor molding and scrap wood. To have enough paintings to sell, they painted quickly, creating a distinctive, colorful style that captured the stormy clouds, windy waves, quiet marshes and deserted beaches of a still undeveloped Florida.

Traveling up and down Central Florida’s highways, they hawked their paintings from the backs of cars for around $20 to $40 each. They sold to roadside motels, banks, doctor’s offices and tourists, producing over 200,000 pieces. Because of their “outsider” status, they never received the recognition and respect from the arts community they deserved, but always yearned to be called “artists.”

Their long journey to cultural respect began in the early 1990s when a curator and art journalist discovered their work in flea markets, antique shops and garage sales. Upon learning how their art was originally produced and sold, he named them “The Highwaymen.”

The Highwaymen initially painted to escape poverty, and today their art adorns the walls of respected museums, governor mansions…and even the White House. Collectors now pay in excess of $50,000 for these cherished works. After the ravages and fortune of friendships, jealousy, murder, hope and triumph, The Highwaymen have become an integral part of art history.

VIP Opening & Champagne Reception with Live Demonstration | October 30th

On Exhibit | October 30th-November 25th

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Oct 30 2024 - Nov 25 2024


5:00 pm - 6:00 pm