Arlington's Lunch Counter Sit-ins Commemorative Prints

Sit-ins Portfolio by Amos Kennedy Jr. at Shirlington Library

Shirlington Library (on exhibition August 2022 to January 2023)
4200 Campbell Ave., Arlington, VA 22206

Artwork Details

Artist: Amos Paul Kennedy, Jr.
Material: Hahnemuhle paper, oil-based inks, handset metal and wood type
Date: 2022

Upcoming Programming (Shirlington Library, 4200 Campbell Ave.)

From 2019 to 2022, Arlington Arts visiting artist Amos Paul Kennedy, Jr. worked to bring awareness to Arlington’s civil rights history.  Mr. Kennedy made seven letter pressed cards to honor the 60th anniversary of the seven lunch counter sit-ins that took place in Arlington between June 9-22, 1960. The sit-ins were peaceful protests that challenged widespread segregation policies. In 2021, to pay tribute to this history, Arlington Arts placed a stand at many of the original sit-in locations where commemorative letter pressed cards could be collected.

In 2022, Mr. Kennedy recreated the letter-pressed cards into a portfolio of larger prints on archival paper. One set of prints is currently on view at the Shirlington Library, close to one of the original sit-in locations. Each print showcases a quote from a participant at each of the seven sit-in locations. 

Mr. Kennedy creates prints, posters and postcards from handset wood and metal type, oil-based inks, and eco-friendly chipboard. Much of his work is inspired by proverbs, sayings, and quotes that are significant to the place where he is working.   

Learn more about Amos Paul Kennedy, Jr.'s work with the County as visiting artist.