Sitting in my living room, the whole family was at home during quarantine. Lily was on a zoom call in the kitchen, Fincher was on a school zoom in the dining room, and Poppy was playing in her room. I’m sure the dogs were running around like crazy. That’s when the phone rang. I stepped out on the patio because I find it physically impossible to sit down and talk to someone on the phone, and I started walking around the backyard while I spoke to the curator at the Mississippi Arts and Entertainment Experience.
If you aren’t familiar, the Mississippi Arts and Entertainment Experience (or the MAX for short) is a fantastic museum in Meridian, Mississippi. At The MAX, learners of all ages can explore the life stories of Mississippi’s legends, see the rough creative process behind polished work, and pursue their own creative interests through hands-on workshops and events in every area of the arts. It’s a beautiful building that explores the life and story of the history of Mississippi and living, breathing, working Mississippians! I love their tagline;
We are more than a museum. We are Mississippi.
So back to me walking around the backyard. I’m sure I looked crazy, pacing around the yard. But the conversation on the other end was about my first museum exhibition and what the subject of that exhibition could be. I knew it had to be in the vein of my work and style, celebrating nature and our state’s rich culture.
I wrote this artist statement once I sketched up the compositions and made the decisions about what I wanted these pieces to look like:
I lost myself in what I thought I knew about Mississippi.
As a lifetime resident, my knowledge had grown stale. The whitetail deer and mockingbird were her only inhabitants. It wasn’t until I opened my eyes that I found the diverse ecosystems that make up this beautiful state.
I found the stained glass of a gopher tortoise’s shell,
the brilliancy of the red-capped sandhill crane,
the ever-watchful tension of a fox squirrel,
the crowded skies of the delta.
The exhibit is up until November 5th! Go by and see them in real life!