Southern Photography at the Huntsville Museum of Art, Christenberry Even When It's Not, Southern Accent, And Bill Ferris' New Photography BookMonday, September 26, 2016
It closed last month, but I was able to catch Huntsville Museum of Art's photography exhibits, including its show of collection pieces in 'Frozen in Place'
John Reese: Woman and Child, Wilson Park, Birmingham
Melissa Springer: Thanksgiving Dinner in the HIV Isolation Unit
Caroline Davis: And G-d will Raise You Up on the Wings of Eagles and Take You into the Palm of His Hand
Kathryn Tucker Windham: All the Pretty Little Horses
The William Christenberry: Time, Distance, and Memory exhibit was also up
5c Wall with Johnson Grass, Demopolis AL
South End of Palmist Building, Havana Junction AL
and Alabama Box, with wood, soil, color photographs, and fabric
Side of Palmist Building, Havana Junction, AL
If you're familiar with the Rosenbush Furniture store in Demopolis, that's the location of Christenberry's '5 cent' photograph:
Last year at Kentuck, we purchased this piece from Standard Deluxe, which I immediately took as an homage to Christenberry's famous Palmist building photograph, and I thought they were so genius because they overlayed this image on an aerial photograph of Hale County. But guess what? It isn't Hale County, and they just thought the 'Palm Reading' part looked cool. Still, it's in my office and every time I look at it, I think Christenberry.
The palmist building is no longer extant.
This year's Kentuck is October 15-16, and Alabama is playing in Knoxville that weekend, so traffic should be easy. Yay, RTR, and see you there!
Hyperallergic does a piece on Southern Accent: Seeking the American South in Contemporary Art at the Nasher Museum of Art at Duke. The review is certainly worth a read, and especially the author's summary of his own Southernness:
I’ll remember the big, dumb epiphany I had around age thirty, as someone who had always defined himself against Southern stereotypes: That whatever I am was shaped, even in opposition, by the landscape and culture of North Carolina, and that I was ineluctably a North Carolinian, with both the criminal burden and progressive mandate that entails. That my accent is an ineluctably Southern one, however it sounds. And that the South, as this exhibit so acutely reveals, is not a settled matter. It’s something we’re all inventing every day, and whatever we invent is as Southern as what we sweep away.
The Daily Beast with Bill Ferris Taught America What’s So Great About the South and his new book of photographs, The South in Color: A Visual Journal
Ferris gave a mild chuckle. “There is a certain kind of story that Southerners tell, a genuine gift of the gab. Robert Penn Warren had it and loved to hear others tell a story. There’s something I feel when I’m in the South, a gut laughter that these stories evoke. It’s very rarely felt anywhere else, you hold your side you’re laughing so hard. When you look at the South and say what makes it different, story-telling is a part of that and a key for why you have this powerful literary tradition coming out of the South. These are writers who grew up listening to stories, and a sense of humor in the South in which tall tales are cultivated and inspire a writer to take that to a different level.”