Artist associated with the Harlem Renaissance and abstract expressionism and known for "Jazz Quartet" and other works.
He developed an interest in art from an early age; as a child, he copied pictures from the family Bible.
He began working in New York in the early 1930s and quickly became known for his paintings of prominent black artists.
His younger brother Joseph also became a well-known painter. Writer James Baldwin considered him his spiritual father.
He and Gwendolyn Knight both became renowned Harlem Renaissance painters.