Within our growing city, there are few areas that have not been touched by renovation, demolition or other factors involved in community revitalization. But out in the further reaches of the county, it’s still possible to see decaying farmhouses, eerie “still lifes in kudzu,” boarded-up downtowns, and other sights that evoke feelings of wistfulness and nostalgia. However, time goes on, and this landscape continues to disappear beneath the march of progress.
“The Unpainted South—South Carolina’s Vanishing World” is focused on what curator Mary Ellen Fuller refers to as “haunting photography, with accompanying poetry from the book of the same title.” Currently on display at Gallery 135 (Patriot Hall), these images of our heritage and history depict a world and a way of life that will be utterly foreign to future generations.
On Tuesday, February 12, 2013, the Humanities Council SC and the Sumter County Cultural Commission present an up-close look at “The Unpainted South” with a special event designed to reinforce this powerful exhibit. A panel discussion includes photographer Seldon Hill and poet William Baldwin (recently featured on NPR’s “Walter Edgar’s Journal”), along with Sumter area historian Sammy Way and writer Holly Holladay.
“The Unpainted South” takes place in the Booth Room at Patriot Hall, 135 Haynsworth Street, and will last from 5 to 7 p.m. Wine and cheese will be served, and there will be a meet-and-greet and book signings by the participants. Admission is FREE, but seating is limited, so please RSVP as soon as possible to Mary Ellen Fuller at (803) 473-511.
Designed to awaken appreciation for our vanishing past, and with the hope of inspiring preservation efforts, this is an evening that you won’t soon forget.
by Colette Daniels