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Hot Chocolates

ca. 1919-1928 Theresa Bernstein Born: Cracow, Austro-Hungarian Empire 1890 Died: New York, New York 2002 oil on canvas 30 1/4 x 40 in. (76.8 x 101.6 cm.) Smithsonian American Art Museum Gift of Girard Jackson 1998.128 Smithsonian American Art Museum
Luce Foundation Center, 4th Floor, 33B


Luce Center Label

Theresa Bernstein often painted urban scenes and everyday people at play throughout the 1920s, finding inspiration in New York’s music venues. The Hot Chocolates jazz revue started in a Harlem nightclub, Connie’s Inn, and then moved to Broadway’s Hudson Theatre. Over the course of its production, Hot Chocolates featured notable jazz performers Fats Waller, Edith Wilson, Cab Calloway, and Louis Armstrong in his Broadway debut. This painting’s lively composition and rich colors capture the syncopated elements of jazz, as well as the boisterous mood of the show itself. As Harlem Renaissance gossip columnist Geraldyn Dismond wrote in 1929, some parts of Hot Chocolates could "make even a flapper blush."

Keywords

Architecture Interior - civic - theater

Ethnic - African-American

Figure group

Performing arts - theater - performer

Recreation - theater

painting

About Theresa Bernstein

Born: Cracow, Austro-Hungarian Empire 1890 Died: New York, New York 2002

More works in the collection by
Theresa Bernstein