The High showcases Sally Mann, Romare Bearden

Bold name artists are the focus of several exhibitions this fall. Working in photography and collage, respectively, Sally Mann and Romare Bearden headline two shows at the High Museum of Art with work that both engages with the South and offers commentary on its complexities. Lesser known but influential in her own right, abstract artist Mildred Thompson has a solo exhibition at the Spelman College Museum of Fine Art.

Sonya Yong JamesThe Atlanta-based sculptor and multimedia artist is featured in the solo show "Loud Magic" at Whitespace Gallery. Known for often using unconventional materials like horse hair and sheep's wool, James' work examines loss and remembrance, and features sculptures and a sound collaboration with local artist J.D. Walsh. Sept. 6-Oct. 19. Free. Whitepsace Gallery, 814 Edgewood Ave., Atlanta. 404-688-1892,

Mildred Thompson. "Mildred Thompson: The Atlanta Years, 1986-2003" shows how diverse influences from astronomy to spiritualism to metaphysics to music informed the abstract artist's work in a number of genres including painting, sculpture, printmaking and photography, but also writing and creating music until her death in 2003. Sept. 11-Dec. 7. Free. Spelman College Museum of Fine Art, 350 Spelman Lane, 404-270-5607,

Romare Bearden. A profoundly influential African-American artist who has inspired generations of creatives, Bearden's unique collage technique saw its fullest, most powerful expression in his "Profile" series of work he exhibited in 1979 and 1981. It offered a lyrical, impressionist portrait of his life but also delved into the experience of African-Americans during the Great Migration from the South. This exhibition at the High will reassemble the majority of these works in the first showing of the "Profile" series in more than 40 years. Sept. 14-Feb. 2. $14.50. High Museum of Art, 1280 Peachtree St., Atlanta. 404-733-4400,

Chris Verene. The New York-based photographer and former Atlantan has spent more than 30 years documenting family members in his hometown of Galesburg, Illinois, chronicling struggles with drug addiction, poverty and myriad social issues. A solo exhibition from the Galesburg series, "Chris Verene: Home Movies," will appear at Marcia Wood Gallery. And on Oct. 10, Landmark Midtown Art Cinema hosts a screening and post-film discussion with Verene, dedicated to the home movies he has created in conjunction with his images. Sept. 18-Oct. 12. Free. Marcia Wood Gallery, 263 Walker St., Atlanta. 404-827-0030,

Sally Mann.One of the icons of contemporary photography, Mann has often made the South her subject, offering haunting, rhapsodic views of landscape, family and place, as well as contemplations of mortality through female eyes. Four decades of her work are on display in "Sally Mann: A Thousand Crossings." Oct. 19-Feb. 2. $14.50. High Museum of Art, 1280 Peachtree Street, NE, 404-733-4400,

Isabelle de Borchgrave.The Belgian artist crafts historically accurate clothing out of paint and paper to create exquisite three-dimensional works of art. Exploring 500 years of fashion, "Isabelle de Borchgrave: Fashioning Art from Paper" features elaborate recreations of garments found in European paintings and museum collections in trompe l'oeil pieces that can each take up to a month to create. Oct. 22-Jan. 12. $10. SCAD Fash Museum of Fashion and Film, 1600 Peachtree St., Atlanta. 404.253.3132,

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