Collects over 175 years of key moments in the visual history of the Southern United States, with over two hundred and fifty photographs taken from 1845 to present.
The South is perhaps the most mythologized region in the United States and also one of the most depicted. Since the dawn of photography in the nineteenth century, photographers have articulated the distinct and evolving character of the South’s people, landscape, and culture and reckoned with its fraught history. Indeed, many of the urgent questions we face today about what defines the American experience—from racism, poverty, and the legacy of slavery to environmental disaster, immigration, and the changes wrought by a modern, global economy—appear as key themes in the photography of the South. The visual history of the South is inextricably intertwined with the history of photography and also the history of America, and is therefore an apt lens through which to examine American identity. A Long Arc: Photography and the American South accompanies a major exhibition at the High Museum of Art in Atlanta, with more than one hundred photographers represented, including Walker Evans, Robert Frank, Gordon Parks, William Eggleston, Sally Mann, Carrie Mae Weems, Dawoud Bey, Alec Soth, and An-My Lê. Insightful texts by Imani Perry, Sarah Kennel, Makeda Best, and Rahim Fortune, among others, illuminate this broad survey of photographs of the Southern United States as an essential American story.