In recent years, the American South has become the nexus of film production. On commission from the High Museum, Alex Harris began photographing this wave of filmmaking that swept through the South, focusing his attention on the many independent productions that were underway from Louisiana to Virginia. As a native Southerner, Harris is interested in how his home is seen, imagined, and created through cinematic storytelling. And the People Could Fly, Columbia, South Carolina, shows actress Jasiatic Anderson smoking a cigarette on an outdoor patio. Harris photographed the scene on the set of writer and director Roni Henderson’s film And the People Could Fly in Columbia, South Carolina.
This piece is part of the exhibition Our Strange New Land: Photographs by Alex Harris, which is the latest chapter in the ongoing Picturing the South project, for which the High Museum commissions artists to create original bodies of work that offer new perspectives on the South’s social and geographical landscapes.
Gregory Harris, the High’s Associate Curator of Photography, discusses And the People Could Fly, Columbia, South Carolina, in the video above. If you’d like to learn more, join us on February 8 for Conversations with Contemporary Artists: Alex Harris at the High.
Come see this work on the Lower Level of the Wieland Pavilion in our special exhibition Our Strange New Land: Photographs by Alex Harris, on view through May 3, 2020. This is just one of more than seventeen thousand artworks in our rotating collection. It’s all here for you!