Bayard Wootten Photography Exhibit Showing at Roanoke Island Festival Park
UPDATE: Due to flooding, tonight’s (3/2/18) events at Roanoke Island Festival Park have been postponed. The Bayard Wootten exhibit will delay opening until tomorrow morning (March 3) from 9am to 5pm.
Roanoke Island Festival Park invites the public to view their latest exhibit, “‘Light and Air’: the Photography of Bayard Wootten.”
A New Bern native, Wootten was a pioneering female photographer and artist working in the early to mid-1900s, whose photographs are still displayed and renowned today.
This free exhibit will open with a reception on Friday, March 2 from 6 to 8 pm, and will coincide with the Outer Banks Community Quilt Show’s opening reception. The exhibit will continue to run through May 31 and is open daily from 9am to 5pm.
The Light and Air exhibit will feature Wootten’s work capturing the lifestyle of rural communities in North Carolina. Friends of Wootten say that her personable demeanor gave her access to these private corners of the south. She is most recognized for her artistic point of view and for overcoming and thriving despite the challenges she faced in her professional and personal life.
As a single, divorced mother and artist, Wootten picked up photography in 1904 as an additional source of income to support her family. She found success selling post cards and later went on to become the Chief of Publicity at Camp Glen, making her the first woman in the North Carolina National Guard.
Wootten was also the first woman to take an aerial photo and is credited as the designer of the Pepsi logo that she sketched for her neighbor and founder of the company, Caleb Bradham.
“We are thrilled to be able to showcase Bayard Wootten’s photography during Women’s History Month. She was a true pioneer and her work and life continue to inspire today,” says Kim Sawyer, Executive Director at Roanoke Island Festival Park.
The Light and Air traveling exhibit is provided by the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Libraries. Wootten’s photographs are part of the North Carolina Collection at UNC-Chapel Hill’s Wilson Special Collections Library.
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