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About the Author
Born in 1936 in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, William Christenberry is recognized as an artist, photographer, teacher and arts advocate. Greatly influenced by Let us now Praise Famous Men, Walker Evans and James Agee's 1936 masterpiece on life in the Dust Bowl during the Great Depression, Christenberry has spent the last thirty years making pictures in and around Hale County, Alabama, documenting rural southern landscapes and the worn, remote margins of small-town life. Christenberry has lived and worked in Washington, D.C., since 1968, when he became a professor of painting at the Corcoran Gallery School of Art.
If Alabama-born artist William Christenberry regularly engages with the countryside of his home state, with the artlessness of the rural idyll, and the local architecture and its relationship to space, his multimedia installation, the so-called "Klan Room," takes this discourse one step further, deeper, and darker. The room, a continuously evolving work-in-progress consisting of a mass of sketches, paintings, sculptures, found objects, and photographs, addresses the subject of violent repression and racist persecution in the United States, and reveals Christenberry's critical reflection on myths and power symbols. Disappearing Places focuses as well on the artist's greater body of work, on his individual photographs, paintings, sculptures, and drawings, as well as his assemblages and material collages, which underline the poetic power of everyday found objects.
Essays by Susanne Lange, Claudia Schubert and Allan Tullos.