“Kenneth Victor Young, also known as Kenneth V. Young(Ken Young)
born Louisville, KY 1933-died Washington, DC 2017.
Kenneth Victor Young may have been the most important rediscovery of a great talent from the Washington Color School years of the mid-60s and early '70s. Born in Louisville, Kentucky in 1933, he arrived in Washington in the mid-60s and started painting his lyrical abstract images with washed acrylics on unprimed canvas. His studies in physics and the natural sciences at Indiana University informed a different imagery—a fusion of brilliant colors. His knowledge of form and matter gave his paintings a spatial intensity, and he infused this space with multiple orbs of color held together in molecular suspension.
In 1970, Barbara Rose wrote an important article “Black Art in America” for Art in America in which she cited Kenneth Young as an artist of special promise. After being included in several museum and gallery exhibitions, he was awarded a solo show at Fisk University in 1973.
While exhibiting constantly, Young started working in the '60s full-time at the Smithsonian Institution as an exhibition designer. He retired after 35 years from an illustrious career there. His work took him to India, Egypt, and Europe, all of which brought greater depth and passion to his work. One of his untitled works, an intense and deep painting from 1973, is presently touring with a Smithsonian American Art Museum show about African American art in the 20th century.”