Bruce Nugent (1906-1987) writer, painter, illustrator, and popular
bohemian personalitylived at the center of the Harlem Renaissance.
Protégé of Alain Locke, roommate of Wallace Thurman, and friend
of Langston Hughes and Zora Neale Hurston, the precocious Nugent stood for
thirty years as the only African American writer willing clearly to indicate
his homosexuality in print. His contribution to the landmark publication
FIRE!!, the prose composition "Smoke,
Lilies and Jade," was unprecedented in its celebration of same-sex
desire. A resident of the notorious "Niggeratti Manor" in 1927-28,
Nugent appeared on Broadway in Porgy (the 1927 play) and Run,
Little Chillun (1933).