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Romare Bearden (1911-1988) is recognized as one of America’s most creative and original artists of the twentieth century. Born in Charlotte, NC and raised in the Harlem section of New York City, his work draws upon memories of African-American cultural history. Although his early work involved religious themes, his later production showed a greater connection with jazz and its relation to the art of collage. Bearden, who worked for nearly thirty years as a social worker with the New York City Department of Social Services, was a celebrated humanist, as demonstrated by his lifelong support of young, emerging artists. In the 1960s, he was a founder of the Cinque Gallery, which was intended to help young artists, and the Spiral Group, which aided African-American artists. His work is represented in many major museums, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Whitney Museum of American Art, and the Studio Museum in Harlem, among others.