TODAY‘S HOURS: 10am to 5pm

Richard Sexton


B. 1954

Richard Sexton is a fine art and media photographer whose work has been published and exhibited worldwide. He attended the San Francisco Art Institute in the late 1970s, capturing architecture and urban scenery around the Bay Area through the 1980s. By the early 1990s, he relocated to New Orleans to photograph the deep south’s lush landscape and historic architecture. There, he started a photographic series for his handmade art book, The Highway of Temptation and Redemption: A Gothic Travelogue in Two Dimensions which included the photograph, Temptation Can Never Be Too Lurid. The book features signs of various materials – some handwritten – posted along a southern highway route. Sexton states, 

The highway is a slightly varied route across the Florida panhandle from the Gulf coast to southwest Georgia—a journey of modest proportion when measured by physical standards, but, metaphysically, it is fraught with the ambition to be large and revelatory.  Initially, and this persisted for many years, the highway meant relatively little to me.  It was the destination at either end that mattered.  One day, I was traveling the highway, and I noticed a handmade sign, obviously the work of a tormented evangelist, nailed haphazardly to a utility pole.  I became intrigued.  

These roadside proclamations are simple, pragmatic forms of communication.  But they seem to have an underlying motive to influence behavior in some way—to divert, tempt, convert, enlighten, or rebuke.  They are both symbols and artifacts—sketchy but revealing clues to the lives and dispositions of the souls inhabiting this landscape. At highway speed, the road signs are gone before you know it, apparition-like.  The most common proclamations are for Acts of Jesus, bait, and alcoholic beverages—in that order, usually.  Whether their inherent complexity is quite deliberate or accidental, I find them appropriate to their landscape—a Gothic landscape where motives are questionable and the difference between good and evil is muddy like the swamp bottom.  Life and landscape may be ordinary, but their shifty undercurrent looms large.”

The sign featured in Temptation Can Never Be Too Lurid captured Sexton’s attention because of the idea of seductive nature of the message. Sexton states, “We are constantly seeking money, and we fantasize that the search will be easy. This desire makes us vulnerable to the schemes of others who are after the same thing.

Sexton’s photographs are included in the collections of the New Orleans Museum of Art, the Ogden Museum of Southern Art in New Orleans, and the Historic New Orleans Collection, among others. He remains an active photographer in the south, where he splits his time between his residences in New Orleans, LA, and Walton County, FL.


Myrtle Beach’s Franklin G. Burroughs-Simeon B. Chapin Art Museum strives to be one of the finest visual arts museums in the Carolinas. With 11 galleries that change throughout the year, Myrtle Beach’s only art museum offers exhibitions featuring paintings, textiles, sculpture, photography, video, ceramics, assemblage, collage and more. A visit to the Art Museum’s exhibitions can be enhanced by its lively programming, including artist receptions, tours, lectures, workshops and classes for both adults and children.