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Bright Fields Curator Spotlight - Bruce Levingston

Meet Bruce Levingston, acclaimed concert pianist and Mississippi native, and the curator for this Fall’s celebratory exhibition, Bright Fields: The Mastery of Marie Hull. Levingston has appeared at Carnegie Hall and Lincoln Center as well as in concert as a soloist and chamber musician in many international music festivals. His numerous recordings have received notable critical acclaim, and he was recently named the Chancellor’s Honors College Artist-in-Residence at The University of Mississippi.

On view September 26, 2015 - January 10, 2016, Bright Fields, Myra Hamilton Green and Lynn Green Root memorial exhibition series, showcases approximately 100 Hull works in various media, unfolding chronologically as well as thematically. The exhibition showcases sections devoted to Mrs. Hull’s famous still lifes, and contains selected masterpieces from the collections of institutions such as the Wright Art Gallery at Delta State University, the Ogden Museum of Southern Art, The University of Mississippi Museum, The Johnson Collection, and from many private collections both within and beyond Mississippi. A forthcoming book by the same title – conceived, developed, and authored by Bruce Levingston – is to...

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Posted on Friday, August 28, 2015 by MMA

Shared Stories – Mississippi to Brazil

By guest contributor Shalina Chatlani

Growing up in Mississippi is a collection of sensory experiences. My youth was spending hours in an untamed backyard plucking honeysuckles from a lattice and tasting the morning’s dew, sitting at a soda fountain overwhelmed with smells of blue vinyl and chocolate malts, and sharing a cold brew coffee on a hot afternoon with a loving stranger, who would endlessly tell stories about the old days and express hopes for the future. It’s no wonder that some of Mississippi’s most famous authors, Welty for instance, have dabbled in both written word and conventional art forms as a way to communicate an awareness of the sensory within the true “southern experience.” There’s no doubt that Southern artists, whose memories have been embedded within themes of racism, socioeconomic struggle, and prejudice, have a remarkable talent for telling a story of the state’s both quirky and tragic history within the simplicity of the images they capture.

Thomas D. Clark, a native Mississippian and historian, once wrote that the state’s most defining characteristic is the “enjoyment...

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Posted on Wednesday, August 26, 2015 by MMA

Level-up with Venom

This month’s one-night Museum After Hours pop up – held on each third Thursday – is all about comic books and video games, two of the most popular veins of our collective popular culture. But as guest curator Phillip Rollins (AKA DJ Young Venom) - owner of Offbeat, Jackson’s inimitable comic book shop, vinyl stop, and gallery - attests, these worlds of eye-popping graphics and saturated colors are not just skin deep. Their ubiquitousness is what makes them so impactful; they reach and engage millions through what is certifiably visual art.

“I think it’s important to blend those two worlds, between art and everyday life,” Rollins begins.

The world of comic books, for its part, often reflects real world issues of social justice and re-imaginings of a more promising future. X-Men, for example, one of the most widely consumed and commercially successful alternate universes, is viewed by many as an allegory for tensions of the 1960s. “X-Men played a big role in my life,” Rollins says. “It’s the growing-up-in-a-world-that-hates-and-fears-you type deal.”

Rollins has gathered together an array of striking...

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Posted on Thursday, August 13, 2015 by MMA