How does art influence a community and how does a community influence art? This is a question that I have pondered over the course of many years.
There is a symbiotic relationship between art and community, with both heavily influencing the other. The United States has a vast array of geographical identities, each of which has a unique manifestation of arts and culture. It’s important to understand the community in which art is created in order to gain context and understanding of the intention behind the work.
In the Mississippi Delta, considerable emphasis is placed on arts and culture. In an area with great economic downturn, the arts community is prospering. Often referred to as “The Blues Capital of the World,” the flat area from Vicksburg to Memphis has created a standout identity through visual and auditory arts. World renowned writers, musicians, and artists have used Mississippi as the backdrop for some of their most famous works. By highlighting some of the most outstanding current artists of this region, I hope to give you the tools to understand them and how they are influencing the culture of the Mississippi Delta, as it is being shaped and reshaped daily through their contributions.
As I highlight artists of different regions that are helping to shape their own cultures, I’m curious about what impact in your own community art has. Leave a comment below with a few words that describe your community’s attitude toward local art.