For nearly 80 years, the Jackson Southernaires have been singing the gospel

The Jackson Southernaires will receive a Governor’s Arts Award for Lifetime Achievement in Music on February 6, 2020. A nearly 80 year-old gospel group based in Jackson, Mississippi, they were the first group in Mississippi to employ keyboards, guitar, drums and bass instruments in gospel, establishing a practice that continues today. Formed in 1940 by […]

MAC remembers musician and friend to the agency Melvin “House Cat” Hendrex

By Larry Morrisey, MAC Deputy Director Singer, keyboard player and arranger Melvin L. Hendrex, Jr., better known by his nickname “House Cat,” passed away on December 19, 2019, in Jackson. Born in Jackson in 1949, Hendrex grew up in a musical family. His father was a gospel singer who performed in a professional group and […]

Happy Retirement Diane Williams!

At one point, she admits, MAC Grants Director Diane Williams may have made more money as a MAC Roster Artist than she did from her state government salary. In her 16 years at the Mississippi Arts Commission, Diane Williams made much more than money: the friends, experiences and connections made through her service with MAC […]

Charlie Buckley: From Bob Ross to MAC Fellowship Recipient

By Larry Morrisey Charlie Buckley is a Tupelo-based painter who has primarily worked in the commercial art world, creating and selling his paintings on a full-time basis for nearly a decade. He is a 2019 MAC Artist Fellowship Recipient and is currently represented by galleries in Jackson, Oxford and Nashville. He also maintains a steady […]

Director’s Message: Spring 2019

As the weather warms and the flowers bloom, festivals abound, and art is abundant. I am continuously reminded of the breadth and depth of artistic talent in Mississippi as I travel to towns and cities around the state to see the goings-on of artistic communities. I recently had the pleasure of witnessing the unveilings of […]

Focusing in on Betty Press: 2019 MAC Artist Fellowship Recipient

By Larry Morrisey, MAC Deputy Director This past July, MAC awarded grants to 14 Mississippi artists through the Artist Fellowship Program. The grant program provides up to a $5,000 award to individual artists who demonstrate a high level of excellence in their work. This year’s recipients are from nine different communities and represent several different […]

7 Tips for Applying for a MAC Grant

By Diane Williams, MAC Grants Director As MAC’s Grants Director, I want all of our constituents to be successful when applying for grants. To reduce paperwork and streamline the process for our grant applicants, MAC acquired eGRANT, a new online application system, in 2017. While we believe this change was in the best interest of […]

Holiday Light Shows a.k.a. Holiday Art Installations

By Kristen Brandt, Special Initiatives Director Each year, I anticipate the arrival of the Christmas season. The holidays have a tendency to embolden our artistic side, even those of us who protest a lack of ability or talent! People adorn their homes with the colors and symbols of the season, serenade strangers, and eagerly await […]

The Gift of Arts Education

By Malcolm White, MAC Executive Director At this time of year when gifting is heavily on the minds of many, I’m reminded that one of the greatest gifts we can give children is that of a quality education, which of course, includes arts education. The benefits of arts education are innumerable, and we now have […]

MAC’s Curricula Helps Teachers Incorporate the Arts into Any Classroom

By Charlotte Smelser, MAC Arts Education Director At MAC, we believe every child deserves to be taught in and through the arts. But we also understand the realities and challenges of modern-day education with standards to meet, paperwork to complete, assignments to grade, etc., etc. That’s why we strive to develop quality arts curricula teachers […]