Houston, TX - Houston Center for Photography is proud to present Human Nature, on view April 3 – May 11, 2009. Opening Reception sponsored by Real Ale Brewing Co., Friday, April 3 from 6 – 8 p.m.
Human Nature is an exhibition that raises questions about the current state of our relationship to the natural environment. Are we living for success, or excess? What kinds of stewardship methodologies are being practiced? How are we managing other species’ relationships with Earth? What types of energy are we using? How do population growth and urban sprawl manifest on the landscape? Why do we fabricate species and habitats to resemble the natural world? What is our relationship to food, and what activities are taking place on a local level to support local farmers and growers and promote community?
Exhibiting artists: Benjamin Drummond & Sara Joy Steele (Seattle, WA), Lucas Foglia (Dix Hills, NY), Mary Daniel Hobson (Muir Beach, CA), Pablo Lopez (Mexico City, Mexico), Paula McCartney (Minneapolis, MN), Travis Roozée (Pontiac, MI/Brooklyn, NY), Larry Schwarm (Wichita, KS), Jay Tyrrell (Walnut Creek, CA), Lou Vest (Houston, TX), Robert Voit (Stuttgart, Germany), and HCP’s Collaborations VI program
About the Artists:
Benjamin Drummond and Sara Joy Steele’s Facing Climate Changedocuments semi-nomadic herders in Norway who control reindeers’ migratory patterns. These movements are impacting the regions’ ecosystem, and are spawned by development and climate changes.
Lucas Foglia’s Rewilding images are of individuals who left mainstream society to adopt wilderness or homesteading lifestyles, often in response to environmental concerns and predictions of societal collapse.
In Bottle Dreams, Mary Daniel Hobson takes images of the natural world and stores them in glass bottles, exploring the human desire to control the Earth and the construction of memory.
Pablo Lopez Luz’s aerial photographs of Mexico City exemplify urban sprawl: tight grids of communities networked together via transportation arteries.
Paula McCartney’s photographs feature craft store songbirds set in trees, creating her own version of the natural world.
Travis Roozée’s Centraliadepicts the abandoned Pennsylvania town of Centralia where a coal mining fire has been burning since 1962; the resilience of nature perseveres despite human intervention.
Larry Schwarm’s On Firedepicts prairie fires that sweep across the grasslands of Kansas each spring. These fires historically occurred naturally and are now set by humans to manage the landscape.
Jay Tyrrell’s gelatin silver images of wind farms across the U.S. abstract the functionality of the machinery. These modern versions of ancient power sources tower above the natural land by over 400 feet.
Pilot Lou Vest photographs the petrochemical and fuel refining industries in Houston’s Ship Channel. His images show the quantity of commerce in the U.S.’s busiest port – a landscape largely unseen by most.
Robert Voit’s New Treesdocuments systems of communication in the form of cell-phone towers that are camouflaged to appear as idealized forms of vegetation, including trees, palms and cacti.
In the Learning Center HCP’s high school outreach, Collaborations VI, will exhibit work on the subject of food. Student groups cultural eating habits, the processing and packaging of food, food distribution/food miles, local farmers and markets, and butchers.
Participating Collaborations VI schools include: Bellaire High School, Carnegie Vanguard High School, The Chinquapin School, Cypress Ranch High School, Episcopal High School, The Kinkaid School, KIPP Academy, Stratford High School, and High School for the Performing and Visual Arts.
Related Programming (all events at HCP):
April 9, 7 p.m. -9 p.m.: Collaborations VI & Community Partners Potluck with Slow Food Houston
April 17, 7 p.m.: Film Night: Environmental Justice in the USA, 2008, Directed by Tammy Cromer-Campbell and King Corn, 2007, Directed by Aaron Woolf
April 23, 7 p.m. -9 p.m.: Collaborations VI and Community Partners Potluck with Houston Tomorrow
April 25, 4 p.m.: Menil Community Open House;presentation by Trees For Houston
May 1, 7 p.m.: Film Night: Garbage Warrior, 2007, Directed by Oliver Hodge
May 7, 7 p.m.: Collaborations VI and Community Partners Potluck with Urban Harvest
This exhibition is made possible in part from support by Southern Union Company, Baylee and Kal, James Edward Maloney, Joan Morgenstern, Anonymous, Thomas and Debrah Yale, and Real Ale Brewing Company.