2016 Annual Juried Competition
In August 1955, a 14-year old African American boy allegedly insulted a white woman at Bryant’s Grocery Store in Money, Mississippi. Three weeks later, in the Sumner, Mississippi Courthouse, an all-white jury acquitted his two killers after little more than an hour of deliberation. In the winter of 1955, as a high school senior, I wrote a prize-winning essay about the acquittal of Emmett Till’s killers. On January 24, 1956, Look Magazine published the confessions of the two killers who were reportedly paid $4,000 for their interview. Sixty years later, in the autumn of 2016, I made a pilgrimage to Bryant’s Grocery and the trial site – Sumner Courthouse – and the Mississippi Delta where I photographed back roads and crumbling small towns where cotton is no longer king and the livin’ is far from easy.
Like renowned photographer William Eggleston, Alan took his first photographs more than 60 years ago with a Brownie Hawkeye. A serious amateur for many years, fine art photography became his second career in 2008. Recent exhibitions include group shows at the Attleboro Museum, Griffin Museum, Emerson Umbrella Arts Center, Danforth Museum, Cambridge Art Association, Panopticon Gallery and Connecticut Academy of Fine Art and a one-person show at the Weston, MA Library. He will also have a one-person exhibit at the Acton, MA library in 2017. His publications include “Signs of Life”, a brief illustrated history of photography and “New England Mill Towns,” contemporary images from the birth place of the industrial revolution in America. (See www.blurb.com) Alan’s work has been acquired by corporate and private collectors and the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. Alan has studied art history, drawing, sculpture, ceramics and photography at Princeton, Westchester Art Workshop, School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, the Maine Media Workshops, Griffin Museum and the Photographic Resource Center at Boston University. He is also a graduate of the Harvard Business School.
Artist’s website: www.alanstrassmanphotos.com