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Richard Dial’s The Comfort and Service My Daddy Brings to our Household at the High, from a 2022 visit
The American Perspectives exhibit at the Portland Museum ended May 7 — and especially love Richard Dial’s (Richard is Thornton Dial’s son) ‘The Comfort of Moses and the Ten Commandments’ — but the virtual walk-through is still available here.
Last month, the Walter Anderson Museum did a multi-day campout at Anderson’s favorite getaway, Horn Island.
Turnrow Books, from a 2017 visit
Turnrow Books in Greenwood MS has been devastated by fire. A gofundme is here
Rural Studio, from a 2019 visit
The Bryant’s Grocery marker, from a 2016 visit
Carolyn Bryant Donham, Emmett Till’s accuser, has died.
The excellent obit for Martha Dougherty Sparks in Beaumont, Texas
Remembering Africatown at LitHub:
Forsyth Park, 2021
Harrison Scott Key at Bitter Southerner — I Can Feel G-d’s Presence in this Portable Toilet: Notes on St Patrick’s Day in Savannah, Georgia, U.S.A
(we were) charmed by the surreal splendor of a place that feels like a high-concept VR experience celebrating the zenith of Enlightenment humanism, all those trees, steeples, museums, pocket gardens, Girl Scouts, SCAD students painting en plein air, an outdoor wedding every few blocks. Too perfect to be real, this beneficent fairy kingdom, all shadow and sunbeam, blossom, and gurgle.
Men who would have filleted one another with pruning shears an hour earlier now stood at the borders of their encampments to discuss the rising cost of orthodonture. The lumberjack two spots over now wore a green feather boa.
Also Savannah, at the Oxford American, Joshua Peacock’s piece, Cathedral Basilica of St John the Baptist
Six Barbie Dreamhouses that chart the evolution of the American home at dezeen and I had and dearly loved the A-frame
If you’ve ever wanted a peek inside the mill house in Mtn Brook
The original wax version of Degas’ “Little Dancer Aged Fourteen” has been attacked at the National Gallery; these activists are going to find a way to ruin museum-going as we know it
The Storytellers: Eudora Welty, Richard Wright, William Faulkner at Pinnacle, Jackson MS, 2015
At The Paris Review, Benjamin Nugent with At William Faulkner’s House
(regarding the article author’s professor describing the bedrooms upstairs at Rowan Oak): “It was a house divided between two drinkers who despised each other. He drank whiskey, she drank wine. And let me tell you, boys and girls …” Here, Allan leaned forward and paused to look each one of us in the eye. “You can still taste the poison in the air.”
Gentle reminder that among Faulkner’s faults, likely one that in my book gave Estelle good reason to separate herself from him: his disdain for air conditioning, which she had installed in her bedroom the day after his funeral.
Bonus: here’s a 1957 interview with Faulkner at UVa.
Unidentified participant: Sir, some months ago you expressed a fear in the loss of frontiers in American writing. Do you see any new frontiers opening up?
William Faulkner: Well, not exactly a frontier. I think now that we are faced with more of a—of a threat. It could hardly be a frontier to be conquered. It’s—it’s a force to be resisted, the force that is the pressure to make everybody belong to a mass or a group, which, in my opinion, would be the death of the writing and the painting and the music and everything else, that man has got to resist that. It’s difficult to resist because, to a certain extent, he has got to compromise now, simply in order to get along. It’s the—you’ve got to—to be on the alert constantly to know just exactly where to draw the line, which is—is too bad for the artist who should have all his time free to—to fight simpler dragons than that.
stickers on a post outside Franklin Bar-B-Q in Austin, 2021
Aaron Franklin has opened Uptown Sports Club in Austin after having to ‘reposess’ a smoker he’d lent from Franklin Barbecue to — as Texas Monthly puts it — “a museum in New Orleans. Aaron Franklin became unhappy after learning that a nearby establishment was using the smoker for its restaurant dishes” and I think we all know what museum that was, and the restaurant he’s talking about too (owned by someone with a four-letter last name).
Anyway, he’s getting Leidenheimer bread brought in, and Zapp’s, and making a gumbo that takes three days to be ready. Poboys that he’s calling sandwiches on the menu, red beans & rice, crab Louie, oysters obv, and bread pudding. It’s all here.
BTW if you’re ever wondering why we see Gambino’s bread so often in Bham, it’s because — for one reason — anybody can grab it from the chiller at Restaurant Depot on Lakeshore.
FonFon hamburger, 2020
Y’all know FonFon’s hamburger, but how about Bottega’s, served after 8p only, and only Tues-Thurs: with agrodolce onions, gorgonzola, pancetta, arugula, aïoli and served with chips.
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After Richard Avedon came to New Orleans to photograph William Casby, who at age 106 in 1963 had been born into slavery, the photograph was included in Avedon’s Nothing Personal, which the photographer called some of his best work.
from the NYT:
Now the Casby portrait is going into another book, to be published for the 100th anniversary of Avedon’s birth. The Casby image is one of 150 Avedon photographs accompanied by brief essays.
It is also in “Avedon 100,” an exhibition at Gagosian, the gallery on West 21st Street, that also features family portraits that Avedon took at the same time — Casby flanked by several generations of descendants. More than a dozen of descendants of those descendants gathered for the opening of “Avedon 100” last week.
Sidenote in the article:
Referred to as “English cottages,” architect Carl August Petersen designed the Tudor revival-style brick buildings for Pure Oil in the 1920s, with charming structural details like steep roofs, wide chimneys, and arched doorways. A cottage in Fairport, New York, is now a National Historic Landmark. One in Lexington, Virginia, houses a donut and burger shop called Pure Eats, a nod to its original life as Pure Oil. There are two in Lynchburg—one houses a Japanese restaurant and one a diner called the Texas Inn. In Cape Charles, Virginia, the indie Peach Street Books features a blue tiled roof in the cottage’s original signature shade, with matching shutters and a bay window.
The Clementine Hunter works in the latest Slotin auction were authenticated by Tom Whitehead — more about him and his relationship with Clementine here:
Ralph Vaughn’s Art Road Museum in Rising Fawn, Georgia was on the WDEF news earlier this month.
Andrew Edlin’s tour of the Ousider Art Fair New York 2023
Potchke, from a 2022 visit
A reminder that if you’re sitting in, say, downtown Birmingham, you’re in Jones Valley which is the very, very southern edge of Appalachia.
Bill Swislow’s Art as a Roadside Attraction from the Society for Commercial Archaeology
My hometown just had its Strawberry Festival (Cullman is huge on them) and if you’ve ever wondered what planting those can look like, here’s Boyd Farm in Fairview:
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Her coconut cake at Bottega Cafe, 2017
From a 2009 visit
Of the National Trust for Historic Preservation’s 11 Most Endangered Historic Places, the former home of the late L.V. Hull in Kosciusko, Mississippi. It’s been unoccupied since 2008 and when I went by shortly after, was shocked that the site had all the art removed (it’s all in safekeeping, and now under conservation with Kohler).
Advocates are preparing a National Register nomination and, in conjunction with the Arts Foundation of Kosciusko, planning to create the L.V. Hull Legacy Center comprised of both Hull’s home and four repurposed structures at a large corner lot on her street.
Also in the South:
Pierce Chapel African Cemetery, Midland, Georgia
West Bank of St. John the Baptist Parish, Louisiana
Holy Aid and Comfort Spiritual Church, New Orleans, Louisiana (aka Perseverance Benevolent and Mutual Aid Society Hall)
Charleston’s Historic Neighborhoods, South Carolina