Lucinda Bunnen Dixie Dogs

Lucinda Bunnen, Dixie Dogs, 2014, From the Taken in the South series, South Georgia

An exhibition comprised of 56 photographers' visions of the South over the first decades of the 21st century will be a joint venture for two downtown Meridian venues.

“Southbound: Photographs of and about the New South” will be on display at The Mississippi Arts + Entertainment Experience (The MAX) and the Meridian Museum of Art (MMA) simultaneously through September.

“Southbound” offers a composite image of the region. The photographs echo stories told about the South as a bastion of tradition, as a region remade through Americanization and globalization, and as a land full of surprising scenes and colorful characters. The project’s purpose is to investigate the senses of place in the South that congeal, however fleetingly, in the spaces between the photographers’ looking, their images, and our own preexisting ideas about the region.

Alex Harris, Eliza's Birthday Party

Alex Harris, Eliza’s Birthday Party, 2004, From the Family series, Durham, North Carolina

In addition to the 220 photographs, the exhibition is complemented by a commissioned documentary film by John David Reynolds, an interactive digital mapping environment entitled Index of Southerness created by Dr. Rick Bunch at the University of North Carolina Greensboro, an extensive website (southboundproject.org), and an exhibition catalogue including images by all exhibiting artists and a variety of essays offering a range of perspectives about the South.

"Each photographer presents us with a personal take on the South, one that challenges us to rethink how we see the region," said Dr. William Ferris, author, film documentarian, professor of history at UNC-Chapel Hill, former chairman of the National Endowment for the Humanities, current Director of the Center for the Study of the American South, Grammy winner, and the subject of a Mississippi Blues Trail Marker.

The exhibition focuses on both the positive and less flattering aspects of life in the South. Eleanor Heartney, distinguished art critic, editor, and author, says "Revealed here is the dark side of the human soul, but also flashes of hope and happiness bursting through in musical celebrations, joyful communal rituals, and dusky skies darkened with flocks."

Magdalena Sole Brooklyn Chapel

Magdalena Solé, Brooklyn Chapel, 2010, From The Delta: A Journey through the Deep South series, Greenwood, Mississippi

The exhibit will run through Sept. 6 and is free with regular museum admission at The MAX and free and open to the public at The Meridian Museum of Art.

Southbound: Photographs of and about the New South was organized by the Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art at the College of Charleston in Charleston, South Carolina.

Curated by Mark Sloan, director and chief curator of the Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art, and Mark Long, professor of political science, both faculty at the College of Charleston.

The MAX is located at 2155 Front St. and is open Tuesday-Sunday, from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. The Meridian Museum of Art is located at 628 25th Ave. and is open Tuesday-Saturday, from 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Street parking is available at both museums with shops and restaurants within walking distance.

Island de jean Charles

Water covers, Island road leading to Island de jean Charles. Saltwater erosion and subsidence have caused the island to sink at a rapid rate.

Both institutions will be open on the Fourth of July.

Participating artists

Mississippi artists: Langdon Clay, Maude Schuyler Clay, Will H. Jacks, Kathleen Robbins, Euphus Ruth

Artists from other locales: Shelby Lee Adams, Rob Amberg, Daniel Beltrá, Rachel Boillot, Sheila Pree Bright, Lucinda Bunnen, Keith Calhoun and Chandra McCormick, Langdon Clay, Maude Schuyler Clay, Thomas Daniel, Eliot Dudik, Matt Eich, Lisa Elmaleh, Mitch Epstein, McNair Evans, Lucas Foglia, Kyle Ford, Preston Gannaway, Alex Harris, John Lusk Hathaway, Titus Brooks Heagins, Lauren Henkin, Tim Hursley, Jessica Ingram, Will H. Jacks, Daniel Kariko, Tommy Kha, Kevin Kline, Stacy Kranitz, Gillian Laub, Deborah Luster, Tammy Mercure, Jeanine Michna-Bales, Greg Miller, Susana Raab, Thomas Rankin, Tamara Reynolds, Jeff Rich, Eugene Richards, Kathleen Robbins, Euphus Ruth, Anderson Scott, Jerry Siegel, David Simonton, Chris Sims, Mike Smith, Magdalena Solé, Bill Steber, Mark Steinmetz, Brandon Thibodeaux, Burk Uzzle, Sofia Valiente, Michelle Van Parys, Jeffrey Whetstone and Susan Worsham

Educational Programing

To be determined. Please check the websites of The MAX (msarts.org) and the Meridian Museum of Art (meridianmuseum.org) for updates.

About The MAX

The MAX showcases Mississippi’s Arts + Entertainment Experience in one immersive destination. Here, visitors of all ages explore the global impact of Mississippians on music, literature, art, entertainment, and cuisine. The MAX honors our state’s creative legacy and inspires the next generation of creators through a unique experience of interactive exhibits. Come discover the Mississippi roots of some of the world's greatest arts and entertainment icons — like Elvis Presley, Oprah Winfrey, B.B. King, Faith Hill, Sela Ward, and Kermit the Frog, just to name a few.

About The MMA

The Meridian Museum of Art seeks to promote and support the art, artists, and art programs of our area and region through art education, exhibitions, collections, collaborations with other organizations, special events, and community involvement. MMA programs are designed to further these goals and to make art accessible to everyone in the community.

To request additional information or resources, contact Jerome Trahan, Director of Marketing, at jerome@msarts.org

Through a partnership between The MAX and Meridian Museum of Art, the community is brought together with an exhibition that celebrates and examines the New South through photography, video, and literature.

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