In conjunction with The Museum of Modern Art’s exhibition One-Way Ticket: Jacob Lawrence’s Migration Series and Other Visions of the Great Movement North, the Museum launched a companion, in-depth multimedia website focused on Jacob Lawrence’s Migration Series.
The website offers an interactive exploration of all 60 individual panels with zoomable high-resolution images, providing an experience of the series in its entirety that, at present, is not available anywhere online. The website explores Lawrence’s biography and career; the artists and intellectuals who inhabited Lawrence’s world and contemporaneous historical, literary, musical, and artistic interpretations of the Migration; historical and visual sources for Lawrence’s work, especially the popular and print culture of the 1930s and 1940s; and the social history of the Migration. The site also includes a range of contextual materials, including film, music, poetry, oral history recordings, and photographs. It showcases recordings of the new poems commissioned for the Migration Series Poetry Suite and filmed interviews with historians, writers, and contemporary artists who offer new perspectives on Lawrence’s work; a self-guided audio Harlem Walking Tour; and an interactive infographic allowing users to explore the demographics of The Great Migration.
The self-guided walking tour explores key Harlem monuments and institutions of the 1930s and 1940s, the era during which Jacob Lawrence began his career as an artist. The tour includes stops with artworks related to the exhibition that can only be seen at their locations in Harlem, such as Aaron Douglas’s mural cycle at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture and his mural at the YMCA on 135th Street, and Charles Alston’s recently restored murals at the Harlem Hospital. The tour is narrated by Terrance McKnight and features commentary by Curator Leah Dickerman with Thelma Golden, Director and Chief Curator, The Studio Museum in Harlem; Sharifa Rhodes-Pitts, author of Harlem Is Nowhere; Arva Rice, President and CEO, New York Urban League; Elinor Tatum, Publisher and Editor-in-Chief, New York Amsterdam News; and others. The tour introduces audiences to Harlem sights, sounds, and experiences that helped shape Lawrence’s views as an artist, including the groundbreaking 135th Street library, the headquarters for a major black newspaper, and four other places where Southern and Northern traditions came together.
The associated public programs—Performance of Steffani Jemison’s “Promise Machine“; Terrance McKnight hosts “Migration Rhapsody”; and Jacob Lawrence’s Migration Series and the Legacy of Jim Crow—as well as the Migration Series Poetry Suite were also made available on MoMA’s YouTube channel.