William Christenberry

b. 1936, Tuscaloosa, AL; d. 2016, Washington, District of Columbia
This is and always will be where my heart is. It is what I care about…the human touch, the humanness of things, the positive and sometimes the negative and sometimes the sad.
Windows Of Psalmist Building, (winter), Havana Junction Alabama
Windows Of Psalmist Building, (winter), Havana Junction Alabama

Influenced by photographers Walker Evans and William Eggleston, southern artist William Christenberry is considered a pioneer of color photography as a fine art medium. While working in a wide variety of media, he is best known for his exploration of the psychology of place, in particular, that of his home state of Alabama. Setting out to document the landscape of his forebearers as studies for future paintings, he unintentionally began a more comprehensive project. Through haunting imagery made from annual visits to the same decaying structures and forgotten landscapes in rural Alabama, he tells a larger story around the truths of time’s passage in the South. Intense, unfiltered and direct, these documents of Christenberry’s own reality serve as poignant reminders of life in a pre-digital age.

William Christenberry earned BFA and MFA degrees from the University of Alabama and later taught at Memphis State University and for many years at the Corcoran College of Art and Design in Washington, D.C. He lived and worked in Washington, DC, for forty years. He was the recipient of several fellowships and grants as well as an honorary doctorate degree from the University of Alabama. His work was the subject of the exhibition “Passing Time: The Art of William Christenberry” at the Smithsonian American Art Museum in Washington, D.C. He is included in many important public and private collections, including the Addison Gallery of American Art, Andover, Mass.; the Baltimore Museum of Art; the Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.; the George Eastman House, Rochester; the High Museum of Art, Atlanta; the Museum of Modern Art, New York; the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; the Menil Collection, Houston; and the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. Six monographs of his work have been published over the last few decades.

pdf download cv
Windows Of Psalmist Building, (winter), Havana Junction Alabama
Windows Of Psalmist Building, (winter), Havana Junction Alabama
Church Across Field of Cotton, Pickinsville, Alabama
Church Across Field of Cotton, Pickinsville, Alabama
Untitled (Wildflowers)
Untitled (Wildflowers)
Untitled (Landscape Near Marion)
Untitled (Landscape Near Marion)
Untitled (Side Warehouse, Newbern)
Untitled (Side Warehouse, Newbern)
Untitled (Doors, White Building, Newbern)
Untitled (Doors, White Building, Newbern)
House and Car, Near Akron, AL, 1981
House and Car, Near Akron, AL, 1981
Untitled (5 Cent Sign)
Untitled (5 Cent Sign)
Untitled (Windows, Palmist Building Havana Junction)
Untitled (Windows, Palmist Building Havana Junction)
Untitled (Kudzu, Hale County)
Untitled (Kudzu, Hale County)
Untitled (Door, Cotton Warehouse, Selma)
Untitled (Door, Cotton Warehouse, Selma)
Untitled (Side of Warehouse, Newbern)
Untitled (Side of Warehouse, Newbern)
Untitled (White Door, Near Stewart, AL)
Untitled (White Door, Near Stewart, AL)
Untitled (Cotton Gin, Havana Junction)
Untitled (Cotton Gin, Havana Junction)
Untitled (2 Black Buildings)
Untitled (2 Black Buildings)
Untitled (Lake)
Untitled (Lake)
Untitled (Palmist Building, Havana Junction)
Untitled (Palmist Building, Havana Junction)
Untitled (Horses with Black Buildings, Newbern)
Untitled (Horses with Black Buildings, Newbern)
Untitled (Wildflowers)
Untitled (Wildflowers)
Red Wall Good
Red Wall Good
Suttle Store
Suttle Store
Windows Of Psalmist Building, (winter), Havana Junction Alabama
Windows Of Psalmist Building, (winter), Havana Junction Alabama
Ektacolor professional print, 18x22
1981
Church Across Field of Cotton, Pickinsville, Alabama
Church Across Field of Cotton, Pickinsville, Alabama
c-print, 9x13
1981
Untitled (Wildflowers)
Untitled (Wildflowers)
c-print, 7.75x9.75
1981
Untitled (Landscape Near Marion)
Untitled (Landscape Near Marion)
c-print, 7.75x9.75
1981
Untitled (Side Warehouse, Newbern)
Untitled (Side Warehouse, Newbern)
c-print, 9.75x7.75
1981
Untitled (Doors, White Building, Newbern)
Untitled (Doors, White Building, Newbern)
c-print, 9.75x7.75
1981
House and Car, Near Akron, AL, 1981
House and Car, Near Akron, AL, 1981
contact c-print, 7.75x9.75
1981
Untitled (5 Cent Sign)
Untitled (5 Cent Sign)
contact c-print, 7.75x9.75
1981
Untitled (Windows, Palmist Building Havana Junction)
Untitled (Windows, Palmist Building Havana Junction)
contact c-print, 7.75x9.75
1981
Untitled (Kudzu, Hale County)
Untitled (Kudzu, Hale County)
c-print, 7.75x9.75
1981
Untitled (Door, Cotton Warehouse, Selma)
Untitled (Door, Cotton Warehouse, Selma)
c-print, 7.75x9.75
2018
Untitled (Side of Warehouse, Newbern)
Untitled (Side of Warehouse, Newbern)
c-print, 7.75x9.75
1981
Untitled (White Door, Near Stewart, AL)
Untitled (White Door, Near Stewart, AL)
c-print, 7.75x9.75
1981
Untitled (Cotton Gin, Havana Junction)
Untitled (Cotton Gin, Havana Junction)
c-print, 7.75x9.75
1981
Untitled (2 Black Buildings)
Untitled (2 Black Buildings)
c-print, 7.75x9.75
1981
Untitled (Lake)
Untitled (Lake)
c-print, 7.75x9.75
1981
Untitled (Palmist Building, Havana Junction)
Untitled (Palmist Building, Havana Junction)
contact c-print, 7.75x9.75
1981
Untitled (Horses with Black Buildings, Newbern)
Untitled (Horses with Black Buildings, Newbern)
c-print, 7.75x9.75
1981
Untitled (Wildflowers)
Untitled (Wildflowers)
c-print, 17x21
c. 1980
Red Wall Good
Red Wall Good
mixed media on panel, 5x12
1987
Suttle Store
Suttle Store
prisma color on paper, 4x6
1987