Wednesday, March 13, 2013

JOE LOUIS

This painting is derived from an historical photograph courtesy of Fort Huachuca Museum. 2.5 x 4 inches, acrylic on photo paper.

Joe Louis, the Brown Bomber, entertained troops at the Mountain View Officers Club at Fort Huachuca, Arizona in the 1940s. Originally termed the Colored Officers Club, the building is now in a state of disrepair and is on the Arizona Preservation Foundation's list of Most Endangered Historic Places.

Mountain View Colored Officers Club 

High on a hill overlooking Fort Huachuca Army base in Sierra Vista sits a dilapidated building that once echoed with the sublime song stylings of Lena Horne during World War II. She came to entertain the black troops at the Mountain View Colored Officers Club, built in 1942 by the then segregated Army for its growing number of colored soldiers. A plan to preserve that building and turn it in to an African-American military research center is on the drawing board, but an estimated $3 million is needed to save and convert the club.
In my quest to learn more about Arizona I met up with Jim McPherson, president of the Arizona Preservation Foundation, and we agreed that it would be fun to begin my exploration by doing some paintings of the Most Endangered Historic Places. This is the first half of the first one. There will be eight pairs of paintings in all, each including an image of the endangered building and something other that pertains to it.

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