Do You Know Joe?

Meet Joe York, the director of Pride and Joy.

Joe York (r) on location. Photo by Hollis Bennett.

Joe York hails from Glencoe, Alabama. He received a BA in anthropology from Auburn University and an MA in Southern Studies from the University of Mississippi. While still a graduate student, York realized that he wanted to tell stories through film. The Southern Foodways Alliance gave him a video camera and a tip on an heirloom seed saver in Kentucky, and he was off and running.

York joined the staff of the University’s Media and Documentary Projects, part of the University’s Center for the Study of Southern Culture, in 2005. Since then, he has made over thirty short films and two feature-length documentaries, most of them in partnership with the Southern Foodways Alliance. He is also the author of a book of photography, With Signs Following: Photography of the Southern Religious Roadside (University Press of Mississippi, 2007).

York’s films have won a bevy of accolades at film festivals in the South and beyond. He was named Food Filmmaker of the Year at the New York Food Film Fest in 2009, and has also won awards at the Oxford Film Festival, the Chicago Food Film Fest, and the Crossroads Film Festival in Jackson, Mississippi.

Pride and Joy, York’s feature-length documentary about Southern food, is six years and more than fifty thousand highway miles in the making.

He and his wife, Kathryn, live in Oxford, Mississippi, with their black lab, Dinah. They are expecting their first child at the end of 2012.

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