Bowdoin College Museum of Art

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Alma Woodsey Thomas (Columbus, Georgia, 9/22/1891 - 1978)


Double Cherry Blossoms

Creation Date



late 20th century


60 in. x 40 1/8 in. (152.4 cm x 101.92 cm)

Object Type


Creation Place

North America, United States

Medium and Support

acrylic on canvas

Credit Line

Gift of halley k harrisburg, Class of 1990, and Michael Rosenfeld


Public Domain

Accession Number

Artist Alma Thomas stated: “Painting released me from the limitations of the past and opened the door to progressive creativity.” The limitations to which she refers is the expectation that all works produced by Black artists had to contribute to a “black aesthetic” or serve to counter hegemonic representational views of the Black community. Thomas’s choice to employ abstract expressionism in her process was a refusal of these expectations, allowing her a freedom for self-expression and individual nuance. An avid student of color theory and modernism, most of Thomas’s works are inspired by scenes in nature. Her palette and technique reflected her long studies of color’s complexity and the watercolor medium. Though born in Georgia, her family relocated to Washington, D.C., seeking relief from racial tension. She took her hometown’s celebrated Japanese cherry trees as a source of inspiration for this work.

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