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Highwaymen Kids

April 20 – May 12, 2024

This exhibition presents vivid Florida landscapes painted by middle school students from three Orange County Public Schools – the Academic Center for Excellence, College Park Middle School, and Howard Middle School Academy of Arts. More than 400 young artists participated in our seventh annual competition.

The students took inspiration from the paintings of the Florida Highwaymen, a group of Black artists who were given this name because they took to Florida’s roads in the 1950s and ’60s to market their art. Their landscapes offer a nostalgic reflection of the state’s natural beauty but also reflect the era of strict segregation, when Black Floridians faced limited job opportunities. The Highwaymen – 25 men and one woman – sold their paintings as alternative work to manual labor and asserted economic independence through their art.

This pocket exhibition is located on the second floor of the museum.