Four Flies

Charles Ethan Porter American

Not on view

Four Flies is a distinctive trompe l’oeil watercolor by Porter—the only one known to have been produced by the artist. The largely Connecticut-based, New York- and Paris-trained Porter was among the first African American artists to exhibit his work nationally. After decades of success painting still lifes of fruit and flowers—with the support of patrons such as Samuel Clemens and Frederic Edwin Church—Porter died in poverty and obscurity. A resurgence of interest in his work dates to the late 1980s.

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