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Born in 1930 in Madison, Georgia, Benny Andrews was interested in painting from a very young age. After serving in the Korean War he enrolled in the Art Institute of Chicago. While his natural talent was soon recognized, he was excluded from numerous organizations and the exhibitions they organized for being African American.
He later moved to New York, but his representational style didn?t accord with the trend of Abstract Expressionism championed at the time. However, he persisted in following his own path, producing numerous collages.
In the 60s and 70s he lead protests against galleries and museums that were not exhibiting the work of women and African Americans.
Now his collages on canvas can be found in the most prominent museums in the world, from New York to Tokyo, Vietnam and Moscow, and he has received honors such as the John Hay Whitney and the Rockefeller Foundation Prize.
He is currently a professor at Queens College, New York.