More than 6 million African Americans in the South migrated north seeking better opportunities and a better way of life between 1916-1970. Those millions populated cities such as Chicago, Detroit, Philadelphia and Washington, D.C.
That exodus was called “The Great Migration.”
An homage to that pilgrimage north opened this week at the Mississippi Museum of Art, where 12 artists from across the nation with ties to Mississippi will have their newly commissioned works showcased in the exhibit, “A Movement in Every Direction: Legacies of the Great Migration.”
The exhibit features work by acclaimed Black artists, including Akea Brionne, Mark Bradford, Zoë Charlton, Larry W. Cook, Torkwase Dyson, Theaster Gates Jr., Allison Janae Hamilton, Leslie Hewitt, Steffani Jemison, Robert Pruitt, Jamea Richmond-Edwards, and Carrie Mae Weems. The works explore “profound impact of the Great Migration on the social and cultural life of the United States from historical and personal perspectives,” museum officials explained.
The museum hosted an April 8 weekend opening that featured discussions from most of the artists. The weekend guests included Ford Foundation president and author Darren Walker, who spoke to attendees about the lasting legacies of the Great Migration, and ABC anchor and Mississippi native Robin Roberts.
The exhibit will be open at the museum in downtown Jackson until Sept. 11, 2022.
Here are some photos from the exhibit’s opening weekend.