Presenting for the first time this major body of paintings and constructions,The Early Years places Christenberry's work and his life in the South insignificant new context. Â Nationally recognized as an artist, photographer, teacher, and artsadvocate, William Christenberry has lived and worked in Washington, D.C.,since 1968, when he became a professor of painting at the Corcoran GallerySchool of Art. Although Christenberry is well known as a photographer andsculptor, relatively little has been known about his early paintings andhis career in the South prior to 1968. Born in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, in 1936, Christenberry is closely identifiedwith the culture and environment of his native South, specifically withthe region around Hale County, Alabama, the same region memorialized byJames Agee and Walker Evans in the classic Let Us Now Praise Famous Men.That book, first discovered by Christenberry when it was reissued in 1960,served as a major influence upon his early aesthetic development, includingthe creation of his "Tenant House" series of paintings, photographs,and studies (1960-1964). Throughout The Early Years, Christenberry's workis presented as part of an evolutionary series of developments that beganwith Christenberry's immersion in the Abstract Expressionist philosophiesand techniques taught at The University of Alabama during his years asa student there (1954-1959) and continued through his abandonment of paintingon canvas (1964) and his inclusion of signs and found objects in the three-dimensional constructions he created in Memphis (1964-1968).. Many of the pieces featured in The Early Years were in storage in Christenberry'sattic for nearly three decades. Now part of a national touring exhibition,they richly deserve the close attention J. Richard Gruber here gives them.Â
| Deluxe edition (Univ of Alabama Pr, June 1, 1998), cover price $49.95 | About this edition:
Presenting for the first time this major body of paintings and constructions,The Early Years places Christenberry's work and his life in the South insignificant new context.
| Univ of Alabama Pr, June 1, 1998, cover price $29.95