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LACMA acquires portrait of Martin Luther King Jr.

July 19, 2011 |  5:14 pm

King The Los Angeles County Museum of Art has recently acquired a portrait of Martin Luther King Jr. titled "I Had a Dream" by Edward Biberman, the American modern artist who spent much of his adult life in L.A.

LACMA said the painting was acquired June 30 using funds from the museum's American Art Council.

The work went on display at the museum July 8.

LACMA said the painting was completed in 1968, in reaction to King's murder in Memphis the same year. The oil painting, which stands roughly 24 inches by 30 inches, features a closely cropped depiction of King's eyes, nose and mustache.

"I Had a Dream" is the first portrait of the slain civil rights leader to enter LACMA's permanent collection. The museum said the artist intended this work for the public, not a private collector.


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— David Ng

[Updated: a previous version of this post contained an incorrect title for the painting on one reference.]

Photo: "I Had a Dream" by Edward Biberman. Credit: Gallery Z.