I Remember Birmingham

November 14, 2015 – February 28, 2016

Above: John Scott, I Remember Birmingham, 1997, Seven hand-pigmented glass blocks and seven hand-burnished relief prints on Seichosen paper from the glass blocks, Museum Purchase with funds provided by The Margaret Acheson Stuart Society, Courtesy of Arthur Roger Gallery

This technically innovative and spiritually moving installation is John Scott’s response to the tragic church bombing in Birmingham, Alabama on September 15, 1963. Four girls lost their lives that Sunday morning at the Sixteenth Street Baptist Church. This dark day occurred just three weeks after the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. delivered his “I Have a Dream” speech on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C.

I Remember Birmingham (1997), which will remain on view through African American History Month in February, is a ritual piece. It provides a quiet place for people to gather and reflect. The artist emphasized that his work is “about man’s inhumanity to man” and described it as a “poem to their [the girls’] potential. All I can do is scream in their absence for them.”

Scott produced I Remember Birmingham at Graphicstudio, the respected collaborative institute at the University of South Florida, Tampa that creates fine art editions. His work has been shown at many other leading museums, including the Smithsonian American Art Museum in Washington D.C.; the Detroit Institute of Arts; the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; the Dallas Museum of Art; and the Albright-Knox Art Gallery in Buffalo.