May Stevens

(1924 – 2019)

From the Mary Ryan Gallery: Stevens was born in 1924 in Quincy, Massachusetts to a working-class family. After studying at the Massachusetts College of Art, the Arts Students League in New York, and the Académie Julian in Paris, she and her husband, artist Rudolf Baranik, settled in New York City where they became fixtures in the civil rights and anti-war movements. In 1963, Stevens exhibited her Freedom Riders series in her first solo exhibition at the Roko Gallery in New York City. The series was Stevens’ outraged response to the increasingly violent racism facing African Americans living in the American South. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. contributed a catalogue essay.