Tuesday, August 18

The Muse of Place and Time: An Interview with William Christenberry (2004-2005)

"RH: Describe your family background in Tuscaloosa, and its impact on your work. WC: It has been said that I was born in Hale County, but I was actually born in the city of Tuscaloosa, which is just a few miles north. My grandparents on both sides, the Smith Family and the Christenberry Family, were farming families in Hale County. It was made, however you want to look at it, famous or infamous, in Let Us Now Praise Famous Men [1939], which is a coincidence since James Agee and Walker Evans were there in the summer of 1936 putting that work together. I was born in November 1936, so I tell people that I didn’t meet them [laughter]. I was born and raised in Tuscaloosa, went to high school there, and to the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa. My summer forays past and present into Hale County are constant. Since the early 1960s that’s the only time of year and about the only place I make photographs. My earliest color snapshot is from 1960. ..."
American Suburb X
Southern Spaces: Place, Time, and Memory (Video)