The Withers Collection and Pictorial Emporium have partnered with Opera Memphis to offer a Collector’s Series of Dr. Wither’s work. This action packed evening will feature spectacular music, a premium wine tasting, great food and fellowship between lovers of all aspects of the arts. The Withers Collection will present an existing photo series and unveil another never before seen series. The sale of each set will benefit Opera Memphis and The Withers Collection.
The featured offering, Three Kings features Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. engaging in acts that display the human side of the iconic figure through the eyes of Dr. Ernest Withers. Three Kings is a 3 piece set presented in 16 x 20 Premium Luster Photograph, exquisitely matted and framed utilizing the archival museum protocol. The series is limited to 250 sets. Each set is signed by the Archive Trustee, numbered and is presented with certificate of authenticity.
The series that will be unveiled is titled True Saint. True Saint features Danny Thomas and the Grand Opening of St Jude in 1962. True Saint is a four-piece set presented in 16 x 20 Premium Luster Photograph, exquisitely matted and framed utilizing the archival museum protocol. The series is limited to 250 sets. Each set is signed by the Archive Trustee, numbered and is presented with certificate of authenticity.
About Dr. Ernest Withers
Ernest C. Withers (1922-2007), was a photojournalist, based in Memphis, Tennessee. In the 1950s, Withers helped spur the movement for equal rights with a self-published photo pamphlet on the Emmitt Till murder. Over the next two decades, Withers formed close personal relationships with Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Medgar Evers, and James Meredith. Withers’s pictures of key civil rights events from the Montgomery Bus Boycott to the strike of Memphis sanitation workers are historic. Withers was often the only photographer to record these scenes, many of which were not yet of interest to the mainstream press.
Withers photographed more than the southern Civil Rights Movement. Whether Jackie Robinson, Willie Mays, and other Negro League baseball players, or those jazz and blues musicians who frequented Memphis’ Beale Street, Withers photographed the famous and not-so famous. Withers’ collection includes pictures of early performances of Elvis Presley, B.B. King, Ike and Tina Turner, Ray Charles, and Aretha Franklin.
With all of the iconic civil rights, music and sports themed images that Dr. Withers created, we forget that he was a mainstream journalist that captured images of all regional news worthy events.In his more than sixty-year career, Withers accumulated a collection of an estimated five million photographs, which the Withers Collection currently maintains.