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TO MAY 31
Eighty-something African-American painter and patriarch Mose Tolliver of Alabama signs his name with the S written backward and a single initial for his last name so that his signature looks like a partially conjugated verb. And although his naive paintings of people and crosses look as if they could have come straight from a Haitian cemetery or small Mexican town, they in fact bear witness to uniquely American experiences in the Deep South. Now on display at outsider-art show “All in the Family,” Mose T.’s simple, engaging line drawings are accompanied by his daughter Annie T.’s charming scenes of rural life and works by his son, Charles T. Other untrained family traditions are also on display: Outsider artist Howard Finster’s works (Rich in Another Life is pictured) are more stylized and self-conscious, with a heavy use of text and thick symbolism, and his painter son, Roy, and grandson, Michael, have kept the family name in paint—and on the walls—following Finster’s death. So, too, with the Laird family, also of Alabama: The three siblings all paint from their own untutored rural experience, though with results more cutesy than interesting. The exhibition is on view from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday to Friday, to Friday, May 31, at America Oh Yes!, 1700 Connecticut Ave. NW, Suite 300. Free. (202) 483-9644. (Garance Franke-Ruta)