"Now Those Who Were With Me Saw the Light but Did Not Hear the Voice of the One Who Was Speaking to Me"
11 1/2 x 7 7/8 in. (29.21 x 20 cm)
Medium and Support:
Gelatin silver print on paper
Montgomery Museum of Fine Arts Association Purchase
Caroline Davis’ commercial work exposed her to a wide range of subject matter and many different approaches to photography, but she chose to make traditional African-American baptisms the focus of her fine arts work in the 1990s. The artist has great respect for the people she photographs and for the ritual, which culminates in the total immersion of the initiate at the hands of the minister and church elders. Before the religious rites, which occur only two or three times each year in African-American churches in the Black Belt, she obtains permission to photograph from church leaders. Afterwards she gives the church copies of her best images.
A wide range of effects can be achieved depending upon how she positions herself in relation to the water. When she is completely submerged, she achieves a calm composition that suggests peace, as in "Now Those Who Were With Me Saw the Light but Did Not Hear the Voice of the One Who Was Speaking to Me."
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