The celebrated work of graphic memoirist, illustrator and children’s author Lila Quintero Weaver is featured in this thought-provoking exhibition of 25 original drawings and personal memorabilia.
The artist’s story begins in 1961 when, at age 5, her family immigrated from Buenos Aires, Argentina, to Marion, Alabama. Racial inequality already divided the region, and the Civil Rights Movement gained momentum for voting rights and equality. In February 1965, during the fallout from a peaceful protest that turned violent, an Alabama state trooper murdered U.S. veteran and activist Jimmie Lee Jackson in Marion. This horrific injustice energized the Selma to Montgomery Marches, ultimately capturing the world’s horror and, finally, its attention, on “Bloody Sunday.”
These historic events, along with Weaver’s own immigrant journey, serve as the backdrop of her personal story, “Darkroom Drawings,” heralded by “Book Riot” as one of its “100 Must-Read Graphic Memoirs.” She came to her own artistic practice by observing her father, an amateur photographer, minister and educator, as he documented the events in Marion. The museum’s exhibition proves to be an opportunity to examine the past and the present to affect change.