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If You Whisper Whisper a Prayer

Folk and Self-Taught Art
Written over blue Sears fashions stamp: “if you whisper, whisper a prayer call god up tell him up and tell him what you want.” Orange, partly cursive words on cardboard, saying: “God is so good, try him, call him up and tell him what you want.”

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If You Whisper Whisper a Prayer

Artwork Details


Nellie Mae Rowe
American, 1900–1982


before 1978


Crayon, pencil, and pen on cardboard

Accession #



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Currently Not on View


Rowe’s body of work is chock-full of catch phrases and sayings that were collected from all sources of media, whether faith-bound or otherwise. Not all of her -isms are meant to be humorous, but you can certainly imagine her saying this phrase with a wry grin. Didactic in nature, this work is perhaps more subdued than others but undoubtedly no less enthusiastic regarding her particular practice of Christianity.


Gift of Judith Alexander

Image Copyright

© Estate of Nellie Mae Rowe/High Museum of Art, Atlanta.