Artists Asked To Share Memories Of Point Cadet - - The News for South Mississippi

Artists Asked To Share Memories Of Point Cadet

"I may have taken 40 or 50 pictures that night," John Rhodes said as he carried his camera.

Exactly a year ago this week, while taking a photography course, Rhodes was mesmerized by the historic Episcopal Church of the Redeemer bell tower in Biloxi.

"Just about this same angle," Rhodes said as he peered through the lens. "And there's the shot. Only last time, it was a beautiful, beautiful building."

That beautiful structure collapsed under Katrina's flood waters.  Rhodes saw the devastation for himself Monday, on his first return to the property since the August 29th storm.

"I may have taken the last picture of any significance, I think, of the bell tower," Rhodes said. "At that time, no one knew it wouldn't be here, that a month later it would be gone. Well, it's kind of moving. That particular image is one of my favorites. It's very, very sad to see this."

The bell tower and so much of Point Cadet's rich history, culture and architecture are gone.

"It is probably one of the most unique neighborhoods in the United States," said Marjie Gowdy with the Ohr-O'Keefe Museum. That's why the museum is asking artists across South Mississippi to submit a work of art that helps bring back "Memories of Point Cadet."

"Although we're all trying to move forward now, that's very important," said Gowdy. "We don't want people to forget. And sometimes art is the best way to remember these kinds of things."

A memory can be a picture, painting, sculpture, or a treasure salvaged from the storm. Each must be an original work of art that captures what Point Cadet is all about.

"I claim it as the perfect shot of the bell tower," John Rhodes said proudly as he looked at his picture.

The Biloxi photographer is eager to share his special memory of the bell tower.

"I have a piece of history, I think, in that photograph, and I wanted to be sure to share that with others," Rhodes said. "I just want to bring back happy memories, and not make people cry."

The Ohr-O'Keefe Museum will continue to accept artwork until September 8th. There is no fee to participate. The Memories of Point Cadet show will open at the Margaret Sherry Library and the West Biloxi Library on October 7th.

By: Trang Pham-Bui

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