Members of the Emory, Atlanta, and surrounding communities are invited to a conversation on Thursday, March 23, at 7 p.m. with celebrated Atlanta Black photographers Jim Alexander and Tom Dorsey. The conversation, to be held in the Jones Room in Emory University’s Woodruff Library, will be moderated by Carlton Mackey, assistant director, community dialogue and engagement, at the High Museum of Art and co-creator/co-director of Emory University’s Arts and Social Justice Fellows Program.
The event is open to the public at no charge, but registration is required for this hybrid event. To register for either the in-person or online option, please visit this webpage. In-person seating is limited to 100 people.
The event is presented by Emory University’s Stuart A. Rose Manuscript, Archives, and Rare Book Library and Michael C. Carlos Museum, both of which have connected exhibits. Visitors are encouraged to come between 5–7 p.m. to view the two exhibitions that inspired this program:
Creative Justice: A Celebration of Emory’s Arts and Social Justice Fellows Program
On view March 17 – May 13, 2023, in Schatten Gallery, Woodruff Library, Level 3
Amid a groundswell of national attention to racial and social injustice, Emory professors and students joined with Atlanta artists in the fall of 2020 to explore how creative thinking and artistic expression can inspire change. The Arts and Social Justice Fellowship was envisioned as an opportunity for faculty members to work alongside partnered ASJ fellows to embed creative projects that reflect on social inequities into existing courses. This exhibit provides a survey of the work the ASJ fellows and faculty did to help students translate their learning into creative activism in the name of racial justice. One component of the exhibit features the works of renowned Atlanta photographer Jim Alexander, who placed a large collection of his photographs (circa 1960-2022) with the Rose Library.
A Very Incomplete Self-Portrait: Tom Dorsey’s Chicago Portfolio
On view now through July 16, 2023, in the Carlos Museum’s Works on Paper Gallery, Level One
The exhibit presents never-before-exhibited works by celebrated photographer Thomas Dorsey. Widely known for his intimate portraits of African American families in their homes in Chicago and Atlanta, Dorsey also photographed the streets, houses, and buildings of his childhood neighborhood on Chicago’s West Side. This portfolio of black-and-white photographs, taken while Dorsey was enrolled at the Art Institute of Chicago, reveals the barren infrastructure of an underserved community and the resilience and stark beauty that can be discovered amidst bleak circumstances.
The conversation is presented in partnership with the Atlanta Preservation Center’s “Phoenix Flies: A Celebration of Atlanta’s Historic Sites,” a program that publicizes Atlanta organizations involved in preservation and the recording and archiving of those efforts. Rose Library, Pitts Theology Library, Carlos Museum, and the Emory Center for Digital Scholarship are among 90 Phoenix Flies partners.