Sister Gertrude Morgan (American, 1900-1980)
    Another Angel
    Acrylic and pencil on paper
    13 x 20 inches (33.0 x 50.8 cm) (sheet)
    Signed lower center: Sister / Gertrude / Morgan


    She was born Gertrude Williams in 1900 in Lafayette, Alabama, married young, and devoted the second half of her life to following God's will. In 1937, God "told her" to share the gospel with the world, so she became an itinerant street preacher, eventually settling in New Orleans -- what she called "the headquarters of sin" -- where she co-founded an orphanage and ministered to the poor. In 1956, God spoke to her again, this time commanding her to paint, and paint she did, despite her lack of training - brightly hued, childlike religious fantasias rendered in crayon, pencil, pen, and acrylics on canvas, cardboard, wood, toilet paper rolls, lamp shades, funeral parlor fans, jelly glasses, and detergent boxes. Morgan's whimsical images, which she coupled with rambling Bible verses, were designed as both personal devotions and teaching tools.

    Around the same time that Morgan began painting as a means of evangelizing, God proclaimed that she was to serve as the Bride of Christ. Shedding her black robes, she donned a nurse's white uniform with cap and set up shop in the whitewashed Everlasting Gospel Mission in the French Quarter. Her colorful paintings, signed "Your Boss's Wife" and "Nurse to Doctor Jesus," enlivened the otherwise white environment. Sister Gertrude famously worked the crowds outside of the Mission, playing her tambourine, singing in a husky voice, and shouting sermons through her painted megaphone. Her lively personality and art attracted the local gallery owner Larry Borenstein, who during the 1960s catapulted her to national acclaim by organizing exhibitions of her paintings, producing record albums of her singing-preaching, and raising money to help her maintain the Mission. The American Folk Art Museum in New York held a major retrospective of her work in 2004, almost twenty-five years after her death in 1980.

    Condition Report*:

    There appears to be no major visible condition issues to note; not examined out of frame; framed under glass. Framed Dimensions 20 X 26.5 Inches

    *Heritage Auctions strives to provide as much information as possible but encourages in-person inspection by bidders. Statements regarding the condition of objects are only for general guidance and should not be relied upon as complete statements of fact, and do not constitute a representation, warranty or assumption of liability by Heritage. Please note that we do not de-frame lots estimated at $1,000 or less and may not be able to provide additional details for lots valued under $500. All lots are sold "AS IS" under the Terms & Conditions of Auction.

    Fees, Shipping, and Handling Description: Framed - without Glass, Medium (view shipping information)

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    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    November, 2017
    18th Saturday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 5
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 575

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