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Classification: Photograph

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Image of Side of Building with Palmist Sign—Havana, Alabama

William Christenberry (aka Bill Christenberry)
American, 1936–2016

Side of Building with Palmist Sign—Havana, Alabama

negative 1971; printed 1980

Object Type: Photograph
3 1/8 in. x 4 7/8 in. (7.94 cm x 12.38 cm)
Medium and Support: Chromogenic print on paper
Accession Number: 1980.0001.0001

Credit Line: Montgomery Museum of Fine Arts Association Purchase

"Side of Building with Palmist Sign—Havana, Alabama" is a site that fascinated Christenberry since childhood and, as an adult, photographed frequently. Initially, the building was a general store run by his uncle. Later the structure was taken over by gypsies, who placed a sign which had the word “Palmist” and an image of a large, dark hand. Later with the building abandoned and falling to ruin, the sign—propped in the window upside down—became a barrier to keep the elements out. For Christenberry, this made “it an icon to me”.

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