You might not recognize his name, but his work might be familiar to you. Henri Linton’s artistic talents are on display for the world to see at corporations across the country. His paintings decorate the walls of hospitals, banks, colleges, universities, and airports.
Mr. Linton is currently the Professor and chairman of the Department of Art at the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff. He began his career at UAPB as an instructor in 1969. In that time, he has captured the history of the school with photographs and various documents that tell the stories of the school’s beginnings in 1973 and the people who breathed life into the pride of Southeast Arkansas. The collection, known as “Keepers of the Spirit,” is currently on display at the school.
Mr. Linton is also the mastermind behind other artistic and photographic exhibits that tell the stories of notable Black Arkansans. “And so Shall She Reap: The Seeds of Beulah Flowers ” tells the story of the mentor to Maya Angelou and the matriarch of a family that produced Black doctors and lawyers who’ve made tremendous contributions to our state and indeed to the country . “Honoring Our Roots: The Lives and Times of Isaac Scott Hathaway and John M. Howard” – an exhibit of photographs, text, paintings and sculptures, documents the lives and times of two of the most significant African-American artists and art educators. “Those Who Dare to Dream: The Works of Arkansas Photographer Geleve Grice” documents the contributions of this outstanding Black American photographer.
As a painter, Mr. Linton takes his unique approach to landscape from an aerial view. Townsend Wolf, director and chief curator of the Arkansas Arts Center in Little Rock, says Mr. Linton’s work is expressionist rather than pure realism. It’s a combination of the two. Wolfe says Mr. Linton is one of the most important artists in the state of Arkansas.
Mr. Linton has the same passion for his work as he has for being an educator. His students take their talents to audiences worldwide. Mr. Linton says parting with a painting is like giving away a part of yourself, but that watching a student grow into a career creates a sense of satisfaction for him.