Friday, March 17, 2017

Through Darkness to Light in the True South -- Shows up at PDNB, Dallas

Dallas' Photographs Do Not Bend Gallery has up now a truly significant show of work by Dallas-based photographer Jeanine Michna-Bales (see images above and directly below).

Michna-Bales' images, made along one of the routes of the Underground Railroad, this one stretching  from Louisiana to Canada, are haunting evocations of landscape in the half-light of dawns and twilights, and of the deep darkness of Southern landscapes when the South was a world lit only by fire. 

The folks at the PDNB Gallery say of Michna-Bales' work that it "takes you on a dark lit passage through demanding terrains and ominous river crossings in Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Tennessee, Kentucky, Indiana, Michigan, and finally Ontario, Canada. The threatening rivers crossed included the Mississippi, Tennessee and the Ohio River (The River Jordan).

"Michna-Bales decade long project uncovered roughly 1,400 miles, revealing actual sites, cities and places that freedom-seekers passed through. Homes of Abolitionists William Beard, Joshua Eliason Jr., and Reverend Guy Beckley gave refuge, and are included in her photographic essay.

"The photographs offer an eerie, visceral journey that immerses you in the night's grasp. The images illustrate the daunting task of traveling roughly 20 miles each night."

 Michna-Bales' work will be up in Dallas through April 15th, 2017. The full press release for this show is here.
If you miss it in Dallas, you can find it at the Jefferson School African American History Center, in Charlottesville, VA, opening on March 22nd, and up through June 15th, 2017. 

For more about Michna-Bales and her work, go here for Lensculture's take, and here for Lenscratch, and here for FeatureShoot.

As a companion show for Through Darkness to Light, the folks at PDNB Gallery have for us a group show, entitled True South, also up now at the Gallery through April 15th, 2017. 

Photographers with work in this show include Keith Carter, William Greiner (see image two images below), Ferne Koch, Earlie Hudnall, Jr., Clarence John Laughlin, Danny Lyons (see image directly below), Birney Imes, Brandon Thibodeaux, Jack Delano, Shelby Lee Adams, Paul Greenberg, Peter Brown, Jack Ridley, and William Christenberry (see image directly above).

True South includes images of people and places in the South made by Southern photographers chiefly in the late 20th and early 21st centuries. 

The folks at PDNB Gallery describe this show as including "portraits of people from Appalachia, prisoners in Huntsville prison, surreal Southern manors of Louisiana, Juke Joints in Mississippi, and 3rd Ward neighbors in Houston, Texas." 

Another fine show, well worth your visit.  

For more on these shows at PDNB Gallery, go here for a feature story and review from the Dallas News


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