The Underground Railroad: The Still Family and Charles Nalle

The Carnegie Center for Art and History is pleased to present The Underground Railroad: The Still Family & Charles Nalle, an exhibition of paintings and drawings by Mark Priest. 

Drawing from art history, American history, biography and years of on-site research, Priest approaches his art practice as a form of visual storytelling. He has frequently invited collaborators into his creative process as narrators and guides whose input he integrates into his work. Priest embraces the stories and through the use of figures, color, light and dramatic compositions, these historical accounts become a vehicle for paint.

For over 23 years the Underground railroad has been the focus of his historical and artistic research. Priest has been driven by a desire to learn about historical events that he was never taught about in school. This railroad did not consist of actual tracks, nor was it located underground. It was a railroad that often eluded those wishing to uncover it. It was a railroad that welcomed those seeking passage on its routes to freedom. One did not need a ticket to ride, nor money to obtain a reservation. What was needed was a determined resolve to be free.

Priest captures the drama, uncertainty, determination, pains and outcomes in over 50 works focused on the accounts of the Still Family and Charles Nalle.


Paintings and drawings by Mark Priest; additional content by Licia Priest.