On April 15, 2009, artist Elizabeth Catlett turned 94. Born in Washington, DC, she continues to be active traveling, speaking, and undoubtedly mentoring in the arts, having had a long career creating and teaching in the United States, and in Mexico where she now lives.
Catlett was an undergraduate art student at Howard University in the 1930s. While there she had many influences; among them she credits artist James Porter with bringing her attention to the work of the Mexican muralists. This led to her initial visit to Mexico in the mid 1930s. She moved there permanently in 1946, when she accepted an invitation to work in Mexico City's Taller de Grafica Popular, a collective graphic arts and mural workshop. Soon afterward she married her second husband, Mexican artist Francisco “Pancho” Mora, and created works devoted to themes of social change much like her contemporaries Leopoldo Mendez, Pablo O’Higgins, and Diego Rivera, among others.