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Cecil Williams talks about his historic photographs at South Carolina State Library exhibit

Cecil Williams Bobby Donaldson Mary Green Brush

If one picture is worth a thousand words, then the 40 images comprising the new South Carolina State Library (SCSL) exhibit, Unforgettable: Celebrating a Time of Life, Hope and Bravery, is worth a book. And photographer Cecil Williams has authored such a book.

cecil williams

One of Cecil Williams’ images in the South Carolina State Library (SCSL)’s current exhibition of photographic works echoes “People Reading,” the visual preface to forthcoming Deckle Edge Literary Festival. Paintings of people reading are on view at Michael’s Café and Catering, and will move to SCSL in early March.

The award-winning photographer signed copies of Out of the Box in Dixie before speaking Friday, Feb. 3, to a responsive audience at SCSL.

Williams’ latest release chronicles the lives and accomplishments of individuals who began and led the struggle for desegregation in America.

Williams, whose fascination with photography can be traced to a hand-me-down camera passed along by a family member when the Orangeburg native was only nine, had begun shooting professionally by the age of 15. At this point in his distinguished career, he has amassed thousands of photo credits in publications; his provocative images have caught the eye of gallery and museum patrons throughout the country.

The current exhibition provides a candid look at events, portraits, and moments of significant social change that impacted the world during an era of social unrest.

The exhibition will remain on view throughout February. SCSL is open during regular state government hours.


Feature photo:  USC history professor Bobby J. Donaldson (left) waits to congratulate legendary photographer Cecil Williams (center,) signing a book for Mary Green Brush at photography exhibit opening, South Carolina State Library.


Submitted by Rachel Haynie of Palmetto Artifacts

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