|Elizabeth Catlett is married to the artist Francisco Mora, and they have one son. She was born in Washington DC in 1919. Her father was a teacher of mathematics and her mother an inspector for social research. She graduated from primary and high school in Washington and received a BS from Howard University and an MFA from the State University of Iowa. She studied ceramics at the Art Institute of Chicago, lithography at the Art Students' League in New York, and privately with the French sculptor O. Zadkine.|
She taught at Prarie View College in Texas, Dillard University in New Orleans, sculpture at Hampton Institute in Virginia, ceramics at the Jefferson School in New York and sculpture at the Carver School of New York (1943-45).
Honors include first prize in sculpture in the American Negro Exposition, Chicago (1940); second prize in sculpture at the Atlanta University annual exhibition (1946). She has received fellowships for creative work in sculpture, paiting and graphic media from the Rosenwald Foundation (1945-46 and 1946-47).
In addition to group exhibitions in the United States, Mexico and Czechoslovakia, she exhibited work in a solo exhibition at Barnett-Aden Gallery, Washington DC in 1947.