Written by Jocelyn Boigenzahn, Curatorial Intern
A native of Dacula, Georgia, Memphis Wood studied at the University of Florida and received her M.F.A. from the University of Georgia.
This work reveals that early in her career, Wood had an interest in American scene painting with a particular focus on this region, drawing clear inspiration from William Aiken Walker (American 1839 – 1921) who is well –known for his documentation of the daily life of African American Sharescroppers before & after the Civil War.
Wood moved to Jacksonville in 1929 in the hopes of securing employment as a teacher. In the ensuing years, she earned a reputation as an inspiring and widely respected art educator, a skilled multi-media artist, and a notable figure in the city’s arts and culture scene. Although, she is best remembered for the abstract and non-objective works she created later in her career, this work explores her exploration of earlier art styles and her process as developing artist and future educator of artists.