Two Exhibitions Document Adirondack Rivers Through Photos | St. Lawrence University

Two Exhibitions Document Adirondack Rivers Through Photos

Beginning on Aug. 22, St. Lawrence University’s Richard F. Brush Art Gallery will host two exhibitions to kick off the 2018-19 academic year.

The first is being curated by artist Kristin Rehder and is titled “Through the Narrows: Meditations on an Adirondack River,” which documents through her photography 137 miles along the Oswegatchie River. Rehder used a 1945 medium-format Rolleiflex twin lens reflex camera, which gives the photographs an implication of age, some grittiness, and the candor of black and white. 

“Influenced by my studies in visual ethnography, I moved forward with clear parameters for shooting,” she commented. “I photographed from my kayak only on the eastern branch of the Oswegatchie, where I regularly paddle or where I could step out of the boat and work from the shoreline. I used one type of film and one camera, with its original—and by no means pristine—Xenar 1:3.5/75mm lens.”

She had to first navigate through a narrows—a channel of water that cuts through metamorphic rock dating back more than 900 million years. “What evolved were visual meditations—a chance to observe the simple gifts of a natural place and to commit to preserving those gifts, and others like it, for future generations.”

Rehder will also give an artists lecture with a gallery reception to follow beginning at 7 p.m. on Monday, Sept. 10, in Griffiths Art Center, room 123. The exhibition will run through Oct. 13.

The second exhibition is curated by art historian Caroline Welsh and is titled "Water Makes Its Way: Adirondack Photographs by Nathan Farb, Eliot Porter, and Gary Randorf."

Three pioneers in color photography capture water sculpting rock in stunning Adirondack views. Nathan Farb, Elliot Porter, and Gary Randorf are world-renowned photographer-naturalists whose passionate wilderness advocacy further distinguishes their contributions as artists.

Nathan Farb (born 1941) began his photography career in New York City, but returned to his childhood home in the Adirondack Mountains in 1981 to produce large scale Cibachrome prints and three Rizzoli book publications that celebrate wilderness through expansive mountainscapes and intimate details.

Eliot Porter (1901-1990) revolutionized nature photography by setting new standards with the publication of In Wildness Is the Preservation of the World (1962) and Forever Wild: the Adirondacks (1966). Porter’s work became synonymous with the Sierra Club, an environmental organization he directed from 1965 to 1971.

In 1972, Gary Randorf (born 1937) was hired as an ecologist with the New York State Adirondack Park Agency and conducted, along with Clarence Petty, a comprehensive review of the Park’s wild, scenic, and recreational rivers. Randorf later became executive director of the Adirondack Council and led that organization’s efforts to combat acid rain’s devastating impacts on the Park during the 1970s and ’80s. He published The Adirondacks: Wild Island of Hope in 2002.

Their photographs of water—still and reflective or in furious motion—are among the finest photographic depictions of Adirondack scenery.

For more information on the exhibtiions and upcomeing events, contact the Brush Art Gallery at 315-229-5174.