Betty Press has been teaching photography at University of Southern Mississippi since 2003. She grew up in rural Nebraska on a farm. She is best known for her photographs taken in Africa where she lived and worked in Kenya from 1987 to 1995 and in Sierra Leone in 2008-09 while her husband was on a Fulbright scholarship. Now living in Hattiesburg, Mississippi she photographs the South as well as Africa.
Her current project deals with living in Mississippi and trying to better understand the “place” where she now lives. In 2012 she received the statewide award in photography from the Mississippi Institute of Arts & Letters and in 2013 a Visual Artist Fellowship Grant from the Mississippi Arts Commission.
Her photographs have been widely exhibited and collected around the world as well as being selected for many juried competitions. In 2011 she published her first award winning photobook I Am Because We Are: African Wisdom in Image and Proverb. She captured a stunning, life-affirming portrait of the African people and culture.
She is represented by Panos Pictures, London; Photographic Image Group, Portland, Oregon; International Visions Gallery, Washington, DC; Oddfellows Gallery, Hattiesburg, Mississippi, and One Off Contemporary Art Gallery, Nairobi, Kenya.