Tennessee, home to Nashville and the Appalachian mountains, probably isn’t the first state you think of when considering Latinx Americans. But the predominantly white, very conservative southern state has a rapidly growing Hispanic population.
Photographer Megan G. King documents this community in her intimate photo series “Hispanic Appalachia.” In the last decade, Tennessee’s Hispanic population increased by 134%, “making it the third highest growth rate of this cultural group in the country,” King points out. Here’s what else she had to say about the work:
“These photographs focus on Latino culture in the changing social landscape of Southern Appalachia. By photographing businesses, people, churches, homes, and other aspects of the community, I am attempting to show the importance of emerging diversity in this historically conservative region of the United States.
“In the photographs, Hispanic culture is represented by vibrant colors, food, clothes, and often decorations. These qualities create a visual juxtaposition to this region’s cultural heritage; however, it is important to see that the Hispanic and Appalachian cultures can blend in a nearly indiscernible manner.”