Leroy W. Allen was one of the most celebrated young American artist of the late 20th and early 21st century. From the local recognition he received from critics, galleries, and media in his hometown of Kansas City, to national coverage and acclaim by the likes of U.S. Art, Upscale Magazine, The New York Times, The Kansas City Star, Hampton University, New Orleans Picayune, and many, many others, his extraordinary gifts and talents have left their mark. A sampling of some of his noted works include “Papa Jim” (Private Collection), a 40″x26″ charcoal rendering of his grandfather, James Wilkes, a Mississippi farmer, and a commissioned work for the Negro League Museum, ”Winds of Change” (Limited Edition Lithograph ). His work was exhibited** by many galleries nationwide, including the renown Stella Jones Gallery in New Orleans , the Hearne Fine Art Gallery in Little Rock, and others. He participated in the Black Romantic Art Show at the Studio Museum in Harlem, New York in 2002 and his art was singled out for comment by The New York Times critic. He was also included in the 2004 Southern Journeys exhibit put on by the Alexandria Museum. Southern Journeys was an exhibit of African American art and artist of the south or those influenced by the south.
Leroy was a member of and/or received awards from the American Watercolor Society (AWS),National Watercolor Society (NWS), California Watercolor Association, the National Oil and Acrylic Painter Society. He won top awards in consecutive years 1996, 1997, and 1998 in the Museum of Science and Industry’s “Black Creativity Exhibition “ in Chicago, Illinois and those honors were some he was proudest of having received. Leroy W. Allen’s art is in the private collections of hundreds of well-known American collectors, galleries, historical societies, and corporations.
On March 9, 2007, tragically we lost this great artist. The Kansas City Star ran an appreciation article in its Sunday, April 8, 2007 issue titled ‘A Huge Loss’ to KC (Alice Thorson, Art Critic) with the sub-heading “Artist’s works captured the humanity of everyday people.” For me, the loss is far more personal. Leroy W. Allen was my most dearly beloved brother.