Red House, 1991

Clarissa Sligh
(American, born 1939)

Location: Tacoma Community College, Tacoma


Red House is part of a series by Clarissa Sligh, based on the artist's experience growing up in a close-knit African-American community. The imagery is a revision and reimagination of "Dick and Jane" learn-to-read books, which Sligh was required to read for school when she was young. Feeling that the stories in these books did not reflect her own community, this series of artworks present insights into "life's sorrow, and joy, struggle and hope" through repeated imagery, ideas, and text.

This silkscreen print is part of a series created by Clarissa Sligh for the collection "Who We Are: Autobiographies in Art." The series was commissioned by the Washington State Arts Commission in partnership with the Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction in 1990.

This artwork was acquired for the State Art Collection in partnership with Who We Are: Autobiographies in Art Collection.


Artist Clarissa Sligh is a visual artist, lecturer, and essayist. She combines imagery, photography, and text into powerful narrative artworks, artist books, and installations. Her art explores memory, identity, transformation, and perception. When Sligh was 15 years old she became the lead plaintiff in the 1955 school desegregation case in Virginia State. Her work – first in math and science working for NASA, later in business, and finally, in the arts – takes into account change, transformation and complication.

Sligh earned a Bachelor of Science in Mathematics from Hampton Institute in Virginia in 1961; a Bachelor of Fine Arts in visual art from Howard University in Washington D.C. in 1972; an MBA from the University of Pennsylvania in 1973; and a Master of Fine Arts in visual art from Howard University in Washington D.C. in 1999. In her first career, she worked at NASA in the manned space flight program. In 1987, Sligh left her day job to focus on working as an artist. Her artworks are featured at the Museum of Modern Art (MOMA) in New York City, the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis, the Smithsonian's National African American Museum, and more. She lives and works in Asheville, North Carolina.

Material CategoryWork on paper - mixed media
MediumSilkscreen print with water-based inks and crayon on paper
Dimensions30 in x 22 3/8 in (sheet)
ID NumberWSAC1990.131.000
Acquisition MethodSite responsive commission
Artist LocationNew York, United States
Location Information
AgencyTacoma Community College
Artwork LocationTacoma Community College
Building 7, Library - Room 170, south wall
WA CountyPierce
Site TypeCollege
Address6501 S 19th St.
Tacoma, WA 98466
Geo. Coordinates47.246639, -122.524193
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