How Does Carrie Mae Weems Marry Word and Photo So Seamlessly?
For once I’m not going to pretend I know all the answers. I’m not going to be an expert at anything. I’m simply going to marvel for a moment, because that’s where remarkable inspiration happens. This weekend I went to the Frist Center in Nashville to see Carrie Mae Weems Three Decades of Photography. Weems is an American photographer whose cultural and personal photography showcases her beliefs on gender, race, class and personal identity. I had been looking forward to the exhibit, specifically The Kitchen Table Series, where she chronicles the life of a woman in modern America – she being the main subject,
The entire body of work was so spellbinding I was left full of inspiration and bereft at the same time, mostly because soaking up a profound body of work was such an emotional journey I was exhausted. If you live in Nashville, I URGE you to check out Carrie Mae Weems exhibit through January 13th.
What was so striking about her work was the way she expertly seamed beautiful photography with applicable poetry and musings. In one photo from The Kitchen Table Series, Weems is talking about a former lover who was always down on himself. She explains this man had a “funeral disposition with a graveyard mind.” HOW DO YOU DO THAT?! How do you think of gorgeous, dripping metaphors that invoke such dark feelings while being heart-stopingly beautiful?! I left the exhibit with a heart full of beauty, truly inspired to create, and create and create. It just goes to remind us all that when we are in ruts, fear not. Inspiration is everywhere.
I’m not on the same playing field as Weems, because she is on a field of her own. Her work certainly speaks for itself and if it doesn’t speak to you, Weems’ gorgeous poetry will speak to you as well. Google her, go see her exhibits and revel in something that is inspiring and scary good.