Elizabeth Catlett

“I have always wanted my art to service my people – to reflect us, to relate to us, to stimulate us, to make us aware of our potential. We have to create an art for liberation and for life.”

  • Name: Elizabeth Catlett
  • Born: April 15th, 1915
  • Died: April 2nd, 2012
  • From: Washington, DC
  • Spouse: Charles White
  • Education:
    • MFA degree in Sculpture from the University of Iowa
  • Occupation: Artist
  • Known For: An influential artist in different mediums such as sculpture, paintings, drawings, and lithographs.
  • Awards:

    Many awards from the NAACP, Women’s Caucus for Arts, honorary doctorates, and the International Lifetime Achievement Award in contemporary sculpture. 

Elizabeth Catlett was the granddaughter of former slaves and raised in Washington, D.C. She attended Howard University and went on to earn the first MFA from the University of Iowa. Her works include depictions of the Black Power Movement, portraits of Martin Luther King Jr., and images of Black females experiences.


To download the Handout:

  1. Click on the image
  2. Right-click and select Save Image As…
  3. Print
  4. Write a description on the line and decorate.
  5. Cut out and use for a selfie to share on our social media page.
  6. Download a card and envelope template and write about an idea this leader inspires.
  7. Check out more resources and ways to celebrate MLK can be found on these links as well as our official  Day of Service opportunity to volunteer.

This ASI Special event is an ongoing volunteer-led project made by people like you, using multiple educational sources regularly being revised and updated. We would love your assistance if you or your group would like to get involved, learn more here.