Images That Speak

From photographer Brandon Thibodeaux's <i>When Morning Comes</i> series
Magdalena Sol&eacute toured the Mississippi Delta for a year shooting images for her book <i>New Delta Rising</i>
Artist Bryan David Griffith captures America's independent bookstores
From Kerry Mansfield's <i>Expired</i> series

Griffin Museum of PhotographyWinchester, Massachusetts January 8 through March 1 Opening reception, January 10

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The Griffin Museum of Photography is tucked into a leafy corner by Judkins Pond, just a five-minute walk from the shops and restaurants in Winchester Center’s historic district. The museum was founded in 1992 by pioneering color photojournalist Arthur Griffin (1903-2001), who specialized in documenting New England; it is housed in a replica of an old gristmill—but any fustiness ends there. The Griffin Museum displays stunning and often provocative works by contemporary artists. Four new exhibits open on January 8: two reflect the landscape and residents of the Mississippi Delta; the others explore the life and death of books in America. In journeying through the northern Mississippi Delta to take his spare, allegorical black and white images, artist Brandon Thibodeaux says he found “strength against struggle, humility amidst pride, and a promise for deliverance in the lives I came to know.” Just as stirring are Magdalena Solé’s prints from the region—they pop with color and visceral immediacy. “I don’t stage anything,” she said in an interview for the Leica Camera blog. “I just like the surprise of life as it is and how it reveals itself.” Meanwhile, Bryan David Griffith toured much of America to capture the souls of independent booksellers. They are “passionately committed to…keeping the flame of literature alive,” he reports from the front: “Far from giving up, they are fighting back.” Borrowed volumes are the subject of Kerry Mansfield’s Expired: elegant silhouettes of frayed book bindings, worn-soft pages with crooked tears fixed by yellowed tape, and close-ups of library check-out cards filled with the scrawled names of children long since grown, or gone. “If you listen carefully,” Mansfield explains in an introduction to the series, “you can hear the aching poetry calling from tattered pages that carry the burden of their years with dignity and grace.”

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