Devil’s Drinking Party Yard ShowDilmus Hall (1901-1987)




1001 Dearing Street, Athens, Georgia, 30606, United States

About the Artist/Site

Dilmus Hall was born in 1901 in Athens, Georgia, where the renowned folk-artist created a slew of Christian-themed sculptures and biblical illustrations. Christianity played an important role in Hall’s artistic practice, his drawings and sculptures playing on African American conjuring culture mixed with stories taken from the bible. Hall’s early life consisted of a multitude of odd jobs, including a stint as a stretcher-bearer in Europe during the first world war. Following his employment as a busboy, a coal miner, and a construction laborer, Hall began focusing more exclusively on creating art. Before transitioning to mostly two-dimensional media using colored pencil and ballpoint pen, Hall used wood and metal to create the bases for concrete sculptures, frequently depicting allegorical scenes that once again reflected his Christian morals and beliefs. In The Devil and the Drunk Man originally placed in Hall’s front yard, the figure of the devil influences the drunk man to partake in the sin of indulgence and vice, leading to his downfall. Hall viewed this kind of sculpture as a protective talisman that would keep himself safe from the hold of everyday evil. The interior and exterior of Hall’s cinder block home were decorated with cross and diamond symbols, leaning into the vernacular religious associations of protective imagery. On the relationship between his craft and religion, Hall states:

“I believe nature is satisfied when you have a talent that He give you—let's go back to Him—and He grants you the opportunity through life. I think you ought to appreciate it. And he will bless you. He was thinking [of] you, on and on, and on and on. He knew me. I trust Him, see. I'm not perfect but I use the talent that He give me.”

Hall’s illustrations can be found in the permanent collections of art museums across the United States including the High Museum of Art, the Museum of Fine Arts Saint Petersburg, and the UWM Mathis Art Collection.


~Nikki Ranney, 2023



Dilmus Hall | Souls Grown Deep 

Transcript of interview with Dilmus Hall, 1984 June 3, from the Willem Volkersz interviews, 1975-1985 | Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution | Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution (

Abraham & Isaac: Explore a Piece from the UWM Art Collection - Art History

Dilmus Hall, <p><em>Mary, Christ, and Joseph on Their Journey to Bethlehem</em></p> | Museum of Fine Arts, St. Petersburg (

African American Self-Taught Art: High Museum of Art Collection (


concrete, paint

SPACES Archives Holdings

1 envelope: images

Map & Site Information

1001 Dearing Street
Athens, Georgia, 30606 us
Latitude/Longitude: 33.952482 / -83.3932071

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