Author Archives: JustFolk Manager

Summer at Just Folk

We have been getting some inquiries about whether or not we are still in business and the answer is definitely yes!!

For those of you who remember our wonderful building in Summerland, we are no longer at that site. The collection has been moved to Los Angeles and is available to be seen by appointment.  Just write me at [email protected] and I will arrange to bring you down to our warehouse/storage facility and show you whatever you want.

All of our inventory is listed and documented on this site, and we are still actively lending our pieces to museums and participating in shows.

It continues to be the year of Bill Traylor and Jeffrey Wolf’s film, Chasing Ghosts, is making the festival circuit to great acclaim.  Catch it if you can.  We have been selling our Bill Traylor postcard books online via Amazon, and the demand has been tremendous.  We also have a catalogue from our first Traylor show, and a great poster, so check out for those. We have also shown some of our Traylors in South Korea and sold two pieces there!  American Self-Taught art is going global!


Feel free to contact me with any inquiries.  I’m trying to get more active on social media, Facebook, Instagram and keep this blog more up to date.  In the meantime, happy summer!

It’s been too long

So much has happened!  We had a fantastic time in New York at the Outsider Art Fair  in January this year.  It was a wonderfully eclectic show, but Just Folk’s booth focused on Bill Traylor.  We were fortunate to sell four of his works, three to new buyers.  The awareness of Bill Traylor’s art has been enhanced by the incredible show at the Smithsonian American Museum in Washington.  Curated by the inspired Leslie Umberger, the show was incredibly mounted and showcased 150 works that Traylor created between the ages of 83-85 years old!  It is terrific that his work is finally getting recognition.  There was a wonderful piece on CBS Sunday Morning that aired April 7th and featured the Smithsonian show through an interview with Leslie. I’m sure it’s available online and I can’t recommend it more highly.  Jeffrey Wolf has also made a magnificent film on Traylor that was shown at the opening in Washington.  He is entering it in festivals, so keep an eye out for  Chasing Ghosts. Please be sure to check out our Traylor section on this site under Outsider and Self Taught.  We have sold so many postcard books and posters through Amazon due to this heightened awareness of Bill Traylor’s work.

On another subject, I am finally learning how to blog and send out our newsletter, as well post on social media.  It’s time I entered the world of modern communication, so look for more of our works online.  Now that we have closed the gallery in Summerland, many people think we are no longer active.  It isn’t so!  We have our entire inventory in Los Angeles, available to view if buyers are interested. Everything we have is on the website, and I have received numerous inquiries about many pieces, and sold quite a bit.  But I am amping up the visibility so that collectors are aware of the wonderful pieces we have.

We have also collaborated with other galleries to get the news out about our artists.  We had  a show at The Good Luck Gallery which featured Elijah Pierce and LeRoy Almon and had a good lecture on African American Art organized by Paige Wery  to heighten awareness.  We have recently sent five pieces, two by Bill Traylor, two by Thornton Dial, and one by James Castle, to Seoul, Korea for an exhibition.  The international interest in Self-Taught artists is growing, and the Asian market is a fascinating place to expand our visibility.

Keep an eye on this blog because I will be updating it more often.  Feel free to write on it, or contact me at [email protected] with any inquiries and comments.  Happy Spring!



Save the Date!

Sunday, June 24, 2pm

945 Chung King Road

Los Angeles, CA 90012

Wed-Sunday 12pm-6pm

Join us for Making Do With What’s On Hand, a talk by well-known art curator and writer Lizzetta LeFalle-Collins, PhD. –

“I blur the lines between academically and self-trained artists. I look at why and how they use materials.”

Dr. LeFalle-Collins will discuss the trajectory of creating objects for display and function within communities of self-taught African Americans, from the slavery era to the present. “Called many things from folk art, self-taught, visionary, to outsider art,” says LeFalle-Collins “whatever the category ascribed to these works, they have in common a shared cultural identity, traditional art practice, and a lineage that undergirds artworks by many contemporary black artists.” The Good Luck Gallery’s exhibition of historical woodcarvings by Elijah Pierce and Leroy Almon (on view June 9 – July 15) will be contextualized in the broader framework of African and African American art. Questions and conversations welcome!

Dr. LeFalle-Collins has taught at Tuskegee University, Mills College, Oakland, and the San Francisco Art Institute. She was the first Visual Arts Curator at the California African American Museum Los Angeles and has created exhibitions for San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, the American Federation for the Arts, New York, and the Museum of the African Diaspora, among many others.


Just Folk at the Good Luck Gallery in downtown LA


Just Folk with The Good Luck Gallery is proud to present:

Elijah Pierce and Leroy Almon

June 9 – July 15, 2018

A farmer guides a plow behind his stoic mule, three men cheat at cards, a snake with rhinestone eyes slithers through the grass, and enslaved men and women hunch over their labor in the fields under the watchful eye of a blond overseer. The Good Luck Gallery is honored to partner with Just Folk and Cavin-Morris Gallery for an historic exhibition of master African-American woodcarvers Elijah Pierce (1892-1984) and Leroy Almon (1938-1997) opening June 9, 2018.

Two significant twentieth century folk artists, Elijah Pierce and Leroy Almon each grew up in the Southern United States but would make their homes and their marks in Columbus, Ohio.

Each would use his craft to further his religious and social mission, with Pierce serving as mentor to the younger Almon.

Elijah Pierce, the son of a former slave, was born in Baldwyn, Mississippi into a deeply religious family. At the age of sixteen he opened a barbershop, and after many years straining against his religious upbringing, finally embraced his traditionalist Christian vocation. He became a minister while continuing to carve and barber, with each practice serving and supporting the other two.

While animals and domestic scenes remembered from his childhood continued to appear in Pierce’s work, he also expertly conveyed stories, sermons, and his own deeply personal spiritual history in the form of carved wood panels. It was into this tradition that Leroy Almon was indoctrinated. Born in Tallapoosa, Georgia, Almon met Elijah Pierce and began his work as a wood carver in adulthood. At various times a shoe salesman, Coca-Cola employee, and police dispatcher, Almon too, would eventually find his vocation as a minister. Many of his relief wood carved panels reflect his religious proclivity, exploring themes ranging from famous historical subjects, slavery, and racism, to gambling and promiscuity.Both artists gained recognition within their lifetimes, though Pierce was in his seventies by the time museums and collectors began to take note. In 1972 Pierce was shown in the Members’ Penthouse of The Museum of Modern Art and in 1982 he received the National Heritage Fellowship from the National Endowment of the Arts, following his inclusion in Black Folk Art in America, 1930–1980 at the Corcoran Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C.

Leroy Almon, The Old Gambler, 1993, painted bas-relief wood carving – signed, 36×15”
Serving as an invaluable record of twentieth-century America, Almon and Pierce’s carvings are in the permanent collections of the Smithsonian American Art Museum and the California African American Museum, among others, and were featured in The High Museum’s exhibition A Cut Above: Wood Sculpture from the Gordon W. Bailey Collection 2016. Carvings of tigers, hippos, and snakes unite with bas-relief carved story panels in this timely exhibition that explores identity, community, popular culture, and religion in powerful, personal style.

“God speaks to me. I know his voice. ‘Elijah, your life is a book, and every day you write a page, and when you are done you won’t be able to deny it because you wrote it yourself.’”
-Elijah Pierce, Elijah Pierce Woodcarver, Columbus Museum of Art, 1992

945 Chung King Road

Los Angeles, CA 90012

Wednesday – Sunday   Noon – 6PM and by appointment