Te-Lah-Nay’s Wall

A few months ago, my sweet friend Anne and I visited the late Tom Hendrix’ monument — the largest un-mortared rock wall in the US and more importantly the largest memorial to a Native American Woman, called the Wichahapi Commemorative Stone Wall and/or Teh-Lah-Nay’s Wall (or Te-Lah-Nay’s Wall), in Limestone County, Alabama.

Teh-Lah-Nay was Tom’s great-great grandmother, and was from the Yuchi (Euchee) tribe. She and her people were forcibly removed from this area of Alabama in the 1830s to be sent to the Indian Nations in Oklahoma. She later walked all the way back from Oklahoma to Alabama, and is the only person known to have successfully returned home.

On one visit, Tom told us the story, and we purchased his book, If the Legends Fade. He said that he sent all money from it to Oklahoma, where Yuchi girls are learning their native language – and these girls will also be sent to college with help from the funds. There are only a handful of people right now that know Yuchi language, so it is vitally important that it be passed down.

On this visit, Anne and I were so happy to meet Tom’s son, and I purchased this primitive stone stack statue. Love looking at this each day and being reminded of Tom and his incredible, heartfelt achievement.


Our first visit to the wall here.

Hearts


Took these pics back in April but I’m thinking of hearts and Valentine’s Day for whatever reason (though, um, don’t take me here for a romantic getaway):  Motel Heart of Dixie in Dadeville, Alabama

Moving Time

I was thinking about earlier this year when the weather was magnificent. First thought: when I was one of the lucky people at a conference (I think there were about a dozen of us) who got to go up the clock tower at Samford Hall at Auburn. It sounds as though they don’t let many people do it, and those who do must be led by a University architect. We were warned about wasps, though they weren’t bad at all, and by exertion, because it’s several stories up and some of it is by shipladder. Easy-easy though.

Loved seeing the bell and setup on our way up, because a couple of years ago, I got to be friends with Patty Allen, the widow of Robert Allen z”l who co-wrote the Auburn fight song with Al Stillman z”l (they’re the same pair who wrote ‘Home for the Holidays’). She is fabulous! I sent her a pic of this after my visit, and she said she wants to come see it in person sometime. It plays ‘War Eagle’ at noon each day.

At the top, we made our way to the clock. If you make it, you’re allowed to sign your name to the backside, and every Aubie mascot has done it, too:

The architect pulled the clockface back:

Here’s me in front of it, for scale:

And that view! Yessss

Jim Love Lib

The weather has been cold and yucky outside, but I was thinking today of our latest visit back in April to Jim Bird’s place in Forkland, Alabama.

I’ve photographed his installations there before and have many of them in my Flickr set here, but this time mostly concentrated on the 32′ Tin Man, with the bathtub feet:

Jim started making his creations when his wife was out of town, and she loved what he made. He kept it going, and there are dozens of hay creatures and metal assemblages now. With Jim’s age, he’s stopped making the art and his son is running things at the farm.

Jim Love Lib:

In Riverside Cemetery in Demopolis, we happened to notice Lib’s monument there. She passed away in 2015, and Jim had made this bird sculpture to go on top:

The Stunning Isabelle de Borchgrave: Fashioning Art from Paper Exhibit at the Dixon

One of *the* most fun and fantastical exhibits closes this weekend at the Dixon Gallery & Gardens in Memphis and it is a must see: Isabelle de Borchgrave: Fashioning Art from Paper

It is just beyond. Every.single.everything is crafted from paper.

Excerpts from the press release:

Isabelle de Borchgrave: Fashioning Art from Paper is a mid-career examination of one of the most creative figures working in Europe today. Belgian contemporary artist Isabelle de Borchgrave is a painter by training, and she uses paper to recreate historic fashions to dazzling effect. De Borchgrave’s collections have been shown internationally  for two decades, and now they will be on view in North America with a U.S. début in Memphis, Tennessee.

This exhibition celebrates de Borchgrave’s most iconic bodies of work, including Les Ballets Russes, Papiers à la Mode, The World of Mariano Fortuny, The Kaftans, and Splendor of the Medici, all of which illuminate 500 years of fashion history:

• On view for the first time in the U.S., Les Ballets Russes features de Borchgrave’s interpretations of the costumes designed by Léon Bakst, Giorgio de Chirico, Pablo Picasso, and others.

• With Papiers à la Mode, de Borchgrave re-imagined iconic garments from world history, including dresses worn by Madame de Pompadour, Marie-Antoinette, Elizabeth I, and Empress Eugenie.

• The World of Mariano Fortuny includes interpretations of the great master painter and designer’s iconic Grecian-styled dresses and tunics from the early 20th century, while Kaftans highlights Silk Road textiles.

• The works in de Borchgrave’s Splendor of the Medici series capture the astounding luxuriousness that characterizes this extraordinary era of intellectual, scientific, literary, and artistic accomplishments. 

This special Elvis piece above will remain in the Dixon’s permanent collection after the exhibit closes.

It’s all just simply stunning and the museum has done a magnificent job.

Tiny excerpts from the artist’s biography:

The story begins in a little house in Sablon, which Isabelle turned into a studio. There, she gave drawing classes to her friends’ children and other neighbourhood children…

Following a visit to the Metropolitan Museum in New York in 1994, Isabelle dreamed up paper costumes…

The Dixon has its own exhibition catalogue available in its giftshop, and I also found these two books at Amazon that I’d love to see:

and


While at the Dixon, paper art by Justin Bowles is also on display, in another wing of the museum:


…and be sure not to miss the Rodin outside (how could you, it’s massive):

and the Jeff Koons Smooth Egg with Bow off to the side

Besides the current exhibitions, there’s a permanent collection of 18th C. German porcelain:

…and a remarkable, remarkable small collection of paintings by Pissarro, Monet, Cassatt, Gauguin, Matisse, Chagall, and other important artists

Monet’s ‘Village Street’


Additional images from the Isabelle de Borchgrave exhibit here in my Flickr set.

Downtown, Carousel, and Wanting The Brooks To Love Eggleston More

After visiting with Mr. Shankerman in his downtown department store in Clarksdale (he also sang Elvis songs for us as a sweet bonus) and he was so kind and generous with our boys, we kept on to Memphis, where it was Corky’s for supper just because we haven’t been to Corky’s in years and I think Shugie’s never been. Our top two there, I think, are still Germantown Commissary and Central.

We asked if it would be okay if we shared this platter (for one on the menu) and it was the perfect size for Av and me.

We stayed at the Memphis Marriott which is just the basic big city, vanilla Marriott. It was fine.
Memphis Marriott

Av was working in Memphis, so the boys and I decided to have a museum day. We Ubered over to the Children’s Museum of Memphis where they have just opened their gorgeous, restored 1909 Dentzel Grand Carousel.

From there, we took another Uber to the Brooks Museum

We played outside…

…and the little cafe has a nice place to read, snack, and play with building pieces


Thrilled to see these William Edmondson pieces. Above, ‘Courting Lady’


and here, ‘Ram’


Roger Brown ‘Clouds over Alabama’


David Bates ‘The Cat Man’

A selection of Carroll Cloar pieces (yesssss)

…but while there’s a large space for William Eggleston photographs, I really wished for a more immersive experience than just linear picture, picture, picture (the step/step/turn mode of display). It seems the Brooks should be Mecca for anyone with any interest in his work as Memphis is where he was born, and where he lives now. There should be features on everything from his Warhol-crowd years to the video work and the new synthesizer music. Places to sit with piles of his books. His place in the popularization of color photography as fine art. The ‘Elvis at Graceland’ project and how that turned out.

If you’re obsessed with ‘The Red Ceiling‘ and have all the feels from the inside of the freezer and the side of that gas station and, hey, The Tricycle, you’re wanting/expecting a love letter from the birthplace of the OG Colorist.

Some Eggleston love from the National Portrait Gallery: