Special Exhibition at Miss. Museum of Art

Jamal Cyrus Exhibition

Cadence Bank is honored to sponsor ‘Jamal Cyrus: The End of My Beginning,’ the first museum survey of the Houston-based multidisciplinary artist’s prodigious career.

The Cadence Bank Foundation, a private foundation that funds 501(c)3 organizations, has contributed $50,000 to the Mississippi Museum of Art (MMA) to support the special exhibition of “Jamal Cyrus: The End of My Beginning,” the first museum survey of the celebrated Houston-based multidisciplinary artist. The exhibition will be on display at the MMA until March 5, 2023, coming after stops at the Blaffer Art Museum in Houston and the Institute of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles.

“Without the support of Cadence Bank, the presentation of this work by a significant African-American artist would not be possible,” says Betsy Bradley, director of the Mississippi Museum of Art.

“Cadence Bank’s contribution allowed MMA to share this special exhibition with its Mississippi community and the tourists it attracts. The exhibition includes engagement spaces and world-class programs that increase opportunities for families and children to engage with the artworks on view,” she adds.

“Cyrus’ work is very reflective of inclusivity and diversity,” says Brad Maley, mid-Mississippi division president and a current member of the MMA’s board of trustees. “This exhibition really fits that mission and value, and supports Cyrus in his efforts to expand his art.”

Jamal Cyrus and his exhibition

According to the Mississippi Museum of Art, “The End of My Beginning” includes approximately 50 works in assemblage, installation, sculpture and textiles by Cyrus. He forges vexing contemporary artifacts that commemorate and question iconic figures and events by using a range of materials, including conch shells, denim, kente cloth, muslin, papyrus and wax.

MMA’s exhibition page says Cyrus explores the evolution of African American identity within Black political movements and the African diaspora. His interest is in the cultural cross-pollination and hybridity that emerged from cross-border interactions in historical eras. This spans from Ancient Egypt and the sixteenth-century transatlantic slave trade to the Jazz Age of the Harlem Renaissance and the civil-rights movements of the 1960s. His aesthetic combines an enduring interest in music and record shops with an expansive array of materials.

The exhibition is accompanied by a roster of public programs with broad community participation.

Cadence Bank Foundation’s role

Cadence Bank stepped into this sponsorship to build awareness following the company’s rebranding, simultaneously supporting diversity, equity and inclusion efforts.

“We have enjoyed a long-standing relationship with the Mississippi Museum of Art and appreciate the economic, educational and social benefits that a thriving arts and culture community contributes to the markets we serve,” says Maley. Over the decades, the company has consistently volunteered its leadership to the MMA.

“Our support of the Mississippi Museum of Art, which is the largest art museum in Mississippi, helps to further Mississippi’s artistic story and cultural legacy,” Maley adds.

Just as Cadence Bank helps people, companies and communities prosper, MMA strives to connect Mississippi to the world, and the power of art to the power of community.

The Cadence Bank Foundation has also made a two-year commitment to the MMA, Maley says.

“We’re looking forward to expanding and continuing our relationship,” he says. “Since joining the board of the Museum of Art, I am learning a lot more about the museum and how we can best work together to promote the arts.”

MMA and Cadence Bank together value relationships

Maley says support for the arts and MMA helps support the company’s commitment to valuing relationships.

“We are deeply committed to the communities we serve and the relationships we foster,” Maley says. “Our support of the arts reflects the interests and passions of our customers and our shared focus on furthering a thriving community for all who live, work and play here.”

Bradley agrees that partnership with MMA and Cadence go well together.

“MMA has more than a century of history presenting high-quality exhibitions and programs to Mississippians and to tourists from around the world,” she says. “By supporting the museum, Cadence also makes possible MMA’s work on health and wellness through its art therapy programs, on education through teacher training and academic partnerships with institutions of higher learning, and on the economic vitality of our capital city’s downtown through indoor and outdoor programs and our beautiful public gardens.”

Bradley says that diversity, equity and inclusion is part of MMA’s mission, just as it is for Cadence Bank.

“We’re committed to honesty, equity and inclusion,” she says. “The Mississippi Museum of Art is a leader in engaging art, artists and participants in the critical work of reckoning with the past, connecting with each other in the present and envisioning a future without division.”

To learn more about how Cadence Bank is giving back to its communities, visit our Stories page.


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