Embracing Eatonville is a photographic survey of Eatonville, FL, the oldest black incorporated town in the United States, and place where celebrated writer Zora Neale Hurston lived and worked. Beginning in January 2002, Bey, Graham, Weems, and Willis spent time in Eatonville taking photographs in an effort to provide a meaningful reflection of the town’s spirit and character, while concentrating on its social, political, and cultural landscape. In an attempt to address the unique character of the community and its history, these artists have produced a diverse portrait of Eatonville using both traditional and interpretive documentary methods.
This catalogue includes essays by Jeffrey Hoone, Franklin Sirmans, and N.Y. Nathiri.
Dawoud Bey is a professor of art and photography at Columbia College in Chicago, IL. He has received numerous awards and fellowships over the course of his artistic career, and is currently represented in the United States by Gorney Barvin + Lee Gallery, NY.
Lonnie Graham is the founder of the African/American Garden Project, a physical and cultural exchange program. He has exhibited his work internationally, and was recently awarded a Pew Fellowship in the Arts, one of the largest grants for an individual Artist. Graham teaches photography at Pennsylvania State University.
Carrie Mae Weems is an internationally recognized artist who has been producing work for over twenty years. She has participated in many artist-in-residency programs, most recently at the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture in Maine, The Atlantic Center for the Arts in Florida, and the Kunstlerhaus Bethanien in Berlin.
Deborah Willis received a MacArthur Foundation Fellowship in 2002. She is an exhibiting photographer, and a professor of photography and imaging at the Tisch School of Arts, New York University. Her investigation and recovery of African-American photography has been invaluable.