Meet William Christenberry
GVI, where friend Bob is Creative Director, was recently commissioned to film 17 short video interviews with American artists for the Smithsonian American Art Museum's Luce Foundation Center. Sixteen are being shown on kiosks at the Luce Foundation Center and one is online. It's a brief chat with Southern artist and photographer William Christenberry, who teaches at my alma mater the Corcoran (or at least did when I was there). Here are some of William Christenberry's books.
It's not long enough to be essential, but I especially like the part about the discouragement his parents didn't give him. (Artists are like certain other subsets of American culture in that they're not always born to members of their own culture—they have to grow up and go find it. Whether they happen to have a parent who is encouraging and respectful is almost entirely a crapshoot, with the odds very much not in their favor. I'm sure that for every Julia Warholia or Jose Ruiz Picasso there are a dozen or a hundred parents who oppress their childrens' artistic natures thinking they need to prepare them for "a real job," never suspecting (or trusting) that art will be their real job and what they do for a living will be their avocation. (Which is a shame, but regretting the situation is like wanting something to be done about the thunder.))
Posted by: MIKE JOHNSTON