Henry Darger (1892-1973) was born in Chicago and placed in a home for boys after his mother died and his father became too ill to care for him. As a young teenager, Darger was diagnosed with behavioral issues and institutionalized in the Lincoln Asylum for Feeble-Minded Children. He was forced to perform labor until he escaped a few years later at the age of 16. He lived quietly and worked as a custodian until his death at the age of 81, when his 15,145-page, vividly illustrated manuscript of the Vivian Girls and their adventures in the Realms of the Unreal was discovered.
View more artwork by Henry Darger at the American Folk Art Museum.