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Palace of Justice, Tangier

ca. 1912-1913 Henry Ossawa Tanner Born: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 1859 Died: Paris, France 1937 oil on canvas 25 5/8 x 31 7/8 in. (65.1 x 81.0 cm) Smithsonian American Art Museum Gift of Mr. and Mrs. John Baxter 1970.67 Not currently on view


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Henry Ossawa Tanner traveled to Tangier in 1912, but it is unclear if he painted this scene there or in his Paris studio, using postcards of the city. The buildings in the background are the law courts, which once housed Morocco’s royal officials. The figures in the right side of the picture represent Mary and Joseph on the flight into Egypt, one of Tanner’s favorite Bible stories. His expressive brushwork and the blues and purples evoke not only an exotic, distant place, but the world of the spirit as well.

Keywords

Architecture Exterior - civic - courthouse

Architecture Exterior - civic - Palace of Justice

Cityscape - Morocco - Tangier

Cityscape - street

Ethnic - Moroccan

Figure(s) in exterior - urban

painting

paint - oil

fabric - canvas