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Future Exhibitions

Sally Mann: A Thousand Crossings

October 19, 2019–February 2, 2020

For more than forty years, Sally Mann (American, born 1951) has made experimental and haunting photographs that explore the overarching themes of existence: memory, desire, death, the bonds of family, and nature’s indifference to human endeavor. What unites this broad body of work is that it is all bred of a place, the American South. A native of Lexington, Virginia, Mann has long reflected on what it means to live in the South and be identified as a Southerner.

Mann uses her deep love of her birthplace and her knowledge of its troubled history to make photographs that pose provocative questions about history, identity, race, and religion. Sally Mann: A Thousand Crossings explores how her relationship with the land has shaped her work and how the legacy of the South—as both homeland and graveyard, refuge and battleground—continues to inform American identity.

“To identify a person as a Southerner suggests not only that her history is inescapable and formative but that it is also impossibly present.”
—Sally Mann, 2005

About Sally Mann
Photo by R. Kim Rushing of Sally Mann with her camera.
R. Kim Rushing (American, born 1961), Sally with Camera, ca. 1998. Gelatin silver print. Collection of Sally Mann.

Born in 1951 in Lexington, Virginia, Mann continues to live and work in Rockbridge County. She developed her first roll of film in 1969 and began to work as a professional photographer in 1972. She attended Bennington College, Vermont, and graduated in 1974 with a Bachelor of Arts in literature from Hollins College, Roanoke, Virginia, where she earned a Master of Arts in creative writing the following year.

She has exhibited widely and published her photographs in the books “Second Sight: The Photographs of Sally Mann” (1983), “Sweet Silent Thought: Platinum Prints by Sally Mann” (1987), “At Twelve: Portraits of Young Women” (1988), “Immediate Family” (1992), “Still Time” (1994), “Mother Land: Recent Landscapes of Georgia and Virginia” (1997), “What Remains” (2003), “Deep South” (2005), “Sally Mann: Photographs and Poetry” (2005), “Proud Flesh” (2009), “Sally Mann: The Flesh and the Spirit” (2010) and “Remembered Light: Cy Twombly in Lexington” (2016). Mann’s bestselling memoir, “Hold Still: A Memoir with Photographs” (2015), was a finalist for the National Book Award.

In 1996, Mann was selected to inaugurate the High’s “Picturing the South” photography series, a distinctive initiative that creates new bodies of work inspired by the American South for the Museum’s collection. She has received numerous other honors as well as grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, the National Endowment for the Humanities and the Guggenheim Foundation. In 2011 Mann delivered the prestigious William E. Massey Sr. Lectures in the History of American Civilization at Harvard University.

 

Press

Organization and Support

This exhibition is organized by the National Gallery of Art, Washington, and the Peabody Essex Museum, Salem, Massachusetts.

This exhibition is made possible by

Premier Exhibition Series Sponsor
Delta logo.

Exhibition Series Sponsors

Northside Hospital logo.

Warner Media logo.

Premier Exhibition Series Supporters
The Antinori Foundation
Sarah and Jim Kennedy
Louise Sams and Jerome Grilhot
wish Foundation logo.

Benefactor Exhibition Series Supporter
Anne Cox Chambers Foundation

Ambassador Exhibition Supporters
Tom and Susan Wardell
Rod Westmoreland

Contributing Exhibition Series Supporters
Lucinda W. Bunnen
Marcia and John Donnell
W. Daniel Ebersole and Sarah Eby-Ebersole
Peggy Foreman
Robin and Hilton Howell
Mr. and Mrs. Baxter Jones
Joel Knox and Joan Marmo
Margot and Danny McCaul
Elizabeth and Chris Willett
The Ron and Lisa Brill Family Charitable Trust

Generous support is also provided by
Alfred and Adele Davis Exhibition Endowment Fund, Anne Cox Chambers Exhibition Fund, Barbara Stewart Exhibition Fund, Dorothy Smith Hopkins Exhibition Endowment Fund, Eleanor McDonald Storza Exhibition Endowment Fund, The Fay and Barrett Howell Exhibition Fund, Forward Arts Foundation Exhibition Endowment Fund, Helen S. Lanier Endowment Fund, Isobel Anne Fraser–Nancy Fraser Parker Exhibition Endowment Fund, John H. and Wilhelmina D. Harland Exhibition Endowment Fund, Katherine Murphy Riley Special Exhibition Endowment Fund, Margaretta Taylor Exhibition Fund, and the RJR Nabisco Exhibition Endowment Fund.