Alabama Artists at the Birmingham Museum of Art

Alabama Artists
at the Birmingham Museum of Art

On my second visit to the Birmingham Museum of Art, I decided to focus on local artists - those who were native to Birmingham and Alabama. Now, my list isn't exhaustive by any means, but does illustrate the breadth of style and talent of the artistic community.
School of Beauty, School of Culture
Acrylic & glitter on stretched canvas, 2012
Born in Birmingham in 1955, Kerry James Marshall grew up in South Central Los Angeles, and now makes his home in Chicago. He is a graduate of the Otis College of Art and Design, and taught at the School of Art and Design at the University of Illinois in Chicago. His work in painting, sculpture, collage, video, and photography examines Black subjects, race, and history.
Head Wrap (gele) 2014
Abiola Sholanke is a Nigerian-American artist born in Birmingham, Alabama in 1978. Her headwraps are based on traditional West African designs.
Reparations Now
Mixed media, 2002
Reparations Now (detail)
Mixed media, 2002
Sculptor Joe Minter was born in Birmingham in 1943, and still makes his home and career there. His found object sculptures are inspired by his father's life - a man who had become a mechanic in the army in WWI, but was unable to use his skills back home because of Jim Crow laws.
Milk, Flour, One Egg, Salt
B/W digital photographs
from the Momma Jackson's Biscuits series
Photographer Celestia Morgan was born in Birmingham in 1981. According to her bio, her work typically revolves around retrospect imagery. She graduated with a BFA in photography from the University of Alabama at Birmingham, and earned an MFA from the University of Alabama at Tuscaloosa. 
Alabama God Damn
Silver gelatin print, 1965
Photographer James 'Spider' Martin was born in Fairfield, AL in 1939, and died in Blount Springs, AL in 2003. He became renowned for his work in documenting the Civil Rights Movement in 1965, in particular the marches from Selma to Montgomery during that period. Martin also worked for The Birmingham News as a photographer.
Alabama Folk Pottery
from the 19th and 20th centuries
Using traditional methods that date back to before the Civil War, Alabama's rich folk pottery tradition continues. Once an art that flourished throughout the state, folk potters use a variety of influences in their work, and are known for distinctively southern styles of stoneware finishing, including an alkaline glaze that uses lime or wood ashes.


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