No Depression dusted off this 2003 article today. There’s a pretty good history of Stax Records in the article, as well as descriptions of some of the best spots in town. What I really admire though, is the author’s attempt at writing about Memphis as a social phenomenon, or the city’s “sense of place.” Many people struggle to capture the character of places with strong identities. Often such courageous attempts are met with criticism or complete rejection. Trying to get at the meaning of a place is irresistible, though, perhaps because the real meaning of a place comes from our collective perception, and not anyone’s individual idea.
Anyway, it’s a good article:
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Photographer William Eggleston is being honored with a retrospective at The Whitney Museum of American Art. You can catch the tail end of the show if you get there before January 25th. Apparently the exhibit is going to travel throughout the US, but details are scarce. I’ll try to get to the bottom of it.
Eggleston is a pivotal figure in the color photography movement. He mostly photographs personal acquaintances and places close to home: Memphis, New Orleans, and the Mississippi Delta. What I find appealing is that Eggleston doesn’t particularly want to be known as a Southern artist and he never sets up a picture. He’s less about “place” and all the preconceptions that go with it, and more about time and the senses: light, form and feeling in a given moment. In abandoning “place,” Eggleston shows us that consciousness of the moment is always available to us. Anytime. Anywhere.
Eggleston Artistic Trust
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Filed under art, photography
I think this sounds grand. American Dream Safari tours leave out of Memphis daily in a restored ’55 Cadillac, and include: Delta Day Trip (“Highway 61 blues and blacktop”); Yards, Gardens, and Architecture (in Memphis); Juke Joint Full of Blues (good way to hit the town and cut loose, fee includes entrance to three clubs); Drive by Shooting (not a funny title, but allows one to pretend to be William Eggleston for a day); Road Therapy Tour (if you just need to get away and cruise through the Arkansas countryside); Gospel Church (fee includes tithe and lunch at the fantabulous Gus’s Fried Chicken); and Tupelo Day Trip (to you-know-who’s house.) You just hop in the car and the driver whisks you away. Perfect.
American Dream Safari; 9am – 5pm, 7 days a week; firstname.lastname@example.org; 901.527.8870; PO Box 3129, Memphis, TN, 38173; www.americandreamsafari.com
Filed under Arkansas, art, blues, food, gospel, history, Mississippi, museums, music, outsider art, people, restaurants, Tennessee, tours