Friday, October 30, 2020


Posted by Gwendolyn Hooks 

I’ve always admired Jacob Lawrence’s art, but I never knew his story. That’s what motivated me to buy I SEE YOU- I SEE MYSELF by Deba Foxley Leach. I purchased it several years ago and it sat on my bookshelf in a place of honor ever since it arrived. Even Toni Morrison’s forward wasn’t incentive for me to pluck it off the shelf and read it. 

Deba Foxley Leach
Times are different. Books and a cushy sofa seem to call my name more often. One day I declared it Jacob Lawrence Day! I was ready to share the pain and artistry of his young life that he showed through his art. Show is the perfect word because every page is full of his art along with his sometimes painful life story. 

By the time he was a young teen, Jacob had lived in three different states. Sometimes those moves landed him in foster homes. Sometimes his parents were together, sometimes they separated. Jacob remembered the details of each move, the neighborhoods, the houses, the stores, and especially the people. 

The author takes the reader through Jacob’s ups and downs and his introduction to painting at the newly opened Harlem Art Workshop. Once Lawrence held a paint brush, he never let it rest. Some say that throug his art, he painted his life story. 

I See You – I See Myself is a fascinating biography about a man who found his passion and never strayed.

I SEE YOU - I SEE MYSELF  The Young Life of Jacob Lawrence

written by  Deba Foxley Leach 

with a foreword by  Toni Morrison. 

Lawrence’s art provides the illustrations of this amazing picture book biography.

1 comment:

Carmela Martino said...

Thanks so much for sharing, Gwen. I'm a big fan of nonfiction picture book biographies, but missed this one. I'll have to check it out.