February 28, 2024

Arts Council Hosts McNeill Photo Exhibit


A special edition of the Leonardtown, MD, A&E Artist Spotlight series, a virtual show that highlights significant contributions to art and entertainment in Leonardtown and throughout Southern Maryland, will feature the life and work of renowned American photographer Robert H. McNeill.

The St. Mary’s County Arts Council is also hosting an exhibit of Mr. McNeill’s jazz photography for a limited time at its gallery at 22660 Washington St. in Leonardtown. The show will run throughout February. The gallery is open Wednesdays through Saturdays from 11am t0 4pm.

Mr. McNeill was born and raised in Washington, DC, and frequently visited and vacationed with his family in St. Mary’s County. He is known for his prolific photography that chronicled the depression era of the 1930s and ’40s. His work captured poignant moments in history depicting social injustice, political movements as well as the culture and glamor of the period identified as the Harlem Renaissance.

The two-part episode in the Spotlight series, partially filmed at and funded in part by the St. Mary’s County Arts Council, focuses on how Mr. McNeill became a photojournalist including becoming fascinated with the photography process during a science class at Dunbar High School, receiving work through President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s Federal Writer’s Project, which was created to provide work for struggling artists during the Great Depression, and how he went on to capture iconic images of notable figures of the depression era.

The Leonardtown A&E Artist Spotlight on Robert H. McNeill will premiere on the Leonardtown Arts & Entertainment Virtual Platform, Leonardtown A&E, on Wednesday, February 15, at 11am and can be viewed here and at the town’s Facebook page.

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