African-American self-taught artist Donald Mitchell, born 1951, lives in the San Francisco Bay area. He has spent time in the state hospital system in California and sometimes seems confused and disturbed by hallucinatory voices.
Mitchell 's early work consisted of obsessively crosshatched fields of lines or brush strokes that obliterated the ground and hid the underlying image. He always started with a small face or figure but eventually filled in the field so that these entities were shrouded and lost. In later works Mitchell started to uncover the faces and forms buried in the darkness. His drawings are now filled with figures in motion and repose, and his trademark has become a tightly composed, graphically sophisticated page of crowded figures marching across the now illuminated field of his vision. While earlier works are mostly black and white, he now uses color as well.
Mitchell’s works are included in collections worldwide, such as the Collection de L’Art Brut, Lausanne, and ABCD, Paris.
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