Bull Dager

  • Sam Doyle, Bull Dager, ca. 1980, paint on sheet metal, Smithsonian American Art Museum, The Margaret Z. Robson Collection, Gift of John E. and Douglas O. Robson, 2016.38.26

Doyle and his Gullah community onSouth Carolina’s St. Helena Island embraced personal choice amid the changingsociety they lived in, understanding that oppression came in many forms. Thetitle of this piece reflects what is now understood as demeaning slang for anAfrican American, masculine lesbian, but Doyle regarded the sexualinclinations, gender identities, and self-presentations of individuals as partof what made them unique, and his aims were to celebrate individuality. Aboutpaintings exploring this theme, Doyle noted: That’s two in one, a man and awoman, oh yes, a natural.”

(We Are Made of Stories:Self-Taught Artists in the Robson Family Collection, 2022)

Title
Bull Dager
Artist
Date
ca. 1980
Location
Dimensions
39 18 × 25 12 × 2 38 in. (99.4 × 64.8 × 6.0 cm)
Credit Line

Smithsonian American Art Museum

The Margaret Z. Robson Collection, Gift of John E. and Douglas O. Robson

Mediums Description
paint on sheet metal
Classifications
Highlights
Keywords
  • African-American
  • Figure – full length
  • African American
Object Number
2016.38.26
Palette
Linked Open Data
Linked Open Data URI

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