Untitled (TV room), from the portfolio Graceland

William Eggleston (born 1939)
Dye transfer print, 1983 (printed 1984)

Smithsonian American Art Museum, Washington, D.C.; Gift of Amy Loeserman Klein
© Eggleston Artistic Trust and Cheim & Read, New York

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One of the common remarks made about Graceland is that it feels like a home, not a mansion. The ceilings are not tall, the furnishings are nice but not opulent, and much of the interior space is perfectly suggestive of the period of Graceland’s last major redecoration, the early 1970s. The downstairs entertainment room was outfitted with three televisions side by side, so that Elvis could watch all of the major networks—ABC, NBC, and CBS—simultaneously.

William Eggleston, born in Memphis in 1939, created a place for color photography in the modern canon; his were the first color photographs ever shown in a solo exhibition at New York’s Museum of Modern Art. Of Eggleston’s work, Eudora Welty said, “Mr. Eggleston's masterly photographs of places draw their strength and their significance from his never losing his own very acute sight of the human factor.”

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