When: Sept. 25-Dec. 31 2012
Levine Museum of the New South's latest exhibit looks at some of America's most graphic, ugliest history. Without Sanctuary: Lynching Photography in America showcases the disturbing brutality that victims of lynch mobs — mostly African-American men and boys — experienced in full view of people who gathered to watch the killings as a form of entertainment. The traveling exhibit (organized by the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center and featuring materials owned by the National Center for Civil and Human Rights) features 70 images gathered from the years 1882 to 1968, including old picture souvenirs and postcards. Could lynching occur today? That's one question visitors are asked to contemplate as they process the violent photos. But it's not all meant to be doom and gloom; there's an element of empowerment to this exhibit, too. Local artist John Love's installation "Bound in Yes" encourages people to write down positive calls to action and inspiration and tie them to a rocking chair.