Our Shared Heritage: Alabama Artists from the Collection

Chan Gallery

1850 – 1940:
On view January 27 – March 24, 2019

1940 – Present:
On view April 7 – June 9, 2019

“Alabama, they say, is like one big front porch where folks gather on summer nights to tell tales and talk family.”

  — Kathryn Tucker Windham

During the run of Our Shared Heritage, the Chan Gallery will become a microcosm of Alabama as seen through the eyes of artists past and present who have captured the people, places and traditions of our state. From the Gulf Coast of the south, through the Black Belt of mid-state, to the red clay hills of the north, a diverse culture emerges. However, viewers will quickly sense the many connections between the land, the people, and everyday life here in the Heart of Dixie.

As a component of the statewide celebration of Alabama’s 200 Bicentennial Celebration in 2019, Our Shared Heritage will highlight important works from the Museum’s collection by artists with strong Alabama ties. Oil paintings, watercolors, drawings, prints, photographs, and other media by over 50 of the State’s best artists from the 19th century to the present will be displayed. Old favorites, along with rarely shown works will include early portraits by William Frye, Nicola Marschall, William Halsey, and Adrian Thompson; mid-20th century paintings, photographs and works on paper by Anne Wilson Goldthwaite, William Christenberry, Kathryn Tucker Windham, and Richard Zoellner; and contemporary works in varied media by Gary Chapman, Evan Wilson, Clifton Pearson, David Parrish, and many others.

Our Shared Heritage will be displayed in two parts, the first focusing on historical works in the collection, and the second featuring works by artists of the present day. A 60-page, fully illustrated catalogue will be published in April to provide a permanent record of the Museum’s collection of Alabama art. Underwritten by a generous grant from the Alabama State Council on the Arts, the catalogue will be available for sale in the Museum Store, and will also be distributed to museums, libraries and other educational institutions throughout Alabama to promote this important resource within the Huntsville Museum of Art’s permanent collection.


1850 – 1940
January 27 – March 24, 2019

Members’ Lecture & Reception
Sunday, January 27, 2019

Lecture and book signing by Frances Osborn Robb: 2:00 p.m.
Light refreshments served by Foundation Board: 3:00 p.m.

Museum members: Free | Non-members: Included in General Admission

Alabama’s foremost historian of our state’s photography is Huntsvillian Frances Osborn Robb. She is convinced that every photograph holds a story, and she has sought them out for more than thirty years. She is, as she says, “passionate about old photographs.” Come see the photographs and hear the stories!

Biography: Frances Osborn Robb is a native of Birmingham and a Distinguished Alumna of Birmingham-Southern College. She holds graduate degrees from the University of North Carolina and Yale University and has taught at Texas Christian University, the University of North Texas, and the University of the South at Sewanee. She has researched vintage Deep South photographs for more than 30 years. Her book, Shot in Alabama: A History of Photography, 1839-1941, and a List of Photographers, (it’s heavy: don’t drop it on your foot!), is a narrative history of our state’s first century of photography with a list of more than 1,400 photographers who worked here. She is a regular contributor to Alabama Heritage magazine and is presently working on the story of Birmingham’s first resident photographer, A. C. Oxford.

1940 – Present
April 7- June 9, 2019

UNFRAMED: The Eve of Prohibition
Thursday, April 4, 2019  |  6:30-9:30 p.m.

An evening of Glitz and Glam 1920’s style!
Hosted by the Huntsville Museum of Art Guild

Tickets available February 19 at hsvmuseum.org

Join the Huntsville Museum of Art Guild at their annual fundraiser which will celebrate the opening of, Our Shared Heritage. Previous events, Folk Fusion, Southern Blues, and Foothills to Fine Art sold out quickly! Don’t miss your chance to attend another premiere event.

The Guild has been a major supporter of the Huntsville Museum of Art for over 50 years and has provided over two and a half million dollars in direct funding from Guild sponsored events such as the Annual Wine Weekend, Leaves of Glass, Folk Fusion, Southern Blues, and Foothills to Fine Art.