Oil on canvas, 22 x 28 inches
Corcoran Gallery of Art, Museum purchase and exchange through a gift given in memory of Edith Gregor Halpert, by the Halpert Foundation
(c) 2003 the Corcoran Gallery of Art
Look at this!
This painting was done in the late 1930s when a form of jazz called Swing music was very popular. Swing music was made popular by musicians like Duke Ellington, Count Basie and Benny Goodman.
Think about it.
What do you think jazz sounded like? Can you tell from the picture? It was lively and fun, and made people want to dance. Davis uses an abstract technique for his painting. This means that things are not depicted as they actually look. Is this the best way to represent jazz music in a painting? Would it work equally well for a painting that was trying to show other kinds of music, such as classical, country or hip-hop music?
Listen to a jazz song, and write a poem while you're listening. Think about words that capture the song's moods and rhythms. Or write a poem that describes the feelings that you get when looking at Davis's painting.
Write a poem about this art. Click here to write.