Blues @ Home: Mississippi's Living Blues Legends by H.C. Porter
For almost 30 years, visual artist H.C. Porter’s environmental portraits have captured the human spirit of her neighbors and everyday Mississippians. In December 2010, Porter set out to document Mississippi’s living blues legends through Blues @ Home: Mississippi’s Living Blues Legends, a collection of 31 paintings and coinciding oral histories collected by collaborator Lauchlin Fields. For more than two years, Porter and Fields traveled the entire state documenting the current landscape of blues in Mississippi, the birthplace of America’s most authentic music form. Porter’s paintings, combined with the first-hand accounts from the blues legends themselves, became a powerful multimedia traveling exhibition that tells Mississippi’s blues story in a unique way and brings awareness to the blues in Mississippi. Blues @ Home first opened April 2014 and was on exhibition for four months at the University Museum on the campus of the University of Mississippi in Oxford. It traveled to the Mississippi Delta August 21, 2014, at the B.B. King Museum & Interpretive Center in Indianola and to the National Blues Museum in St. Louis Missouri on April 2, 2016, where it was the premiere rotating exhibit. This is Porter’s second book. Her first, Backyards & Beyond: Mississippians and Their Stories, published in 2008, was the companion piece to the exhibition of the same name.