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March 17, 2009

Landscapes the subject of photography exhibition now open at the Harn Museum of Art

GAINESVILLE, Fla. —Featuring images of remote canyons, dramatic mountains and local landscapes, the Harn Museum of Art’s newest exhibition includes the work of photographers such as Edward Weston, Minor White, Richard Misrach and Ansel Adams. These and other notable works are on view in Landscape Perspectives: Highlights from the Photography Collection, which opened March 12 in the S.F.I. Gallery.

The selection of American landscape photographs from the Harn collection, augmented by selected loans from local collections, demonstrates how landscapes have been primary subjects since the mid-19th century.

“These works by successive generations of photographers reflect obvious differences in artistic style and evolving technology,” said Tom Southall, curator of photography. “More subtle and in many ways more important, is the reflection of changing attitudes toward the environment and our relationship to the land.”

The photographs are presented in general groups relating to exploration and promotion, celebration of idealized wilderness, nature as metaphor and the inhabited landscape. New acquisitions of works by Mark Klett, including a group of Florida views, reflect current photographers’ desires to examine more than the beauty of wild lands.

Klett said that his primary task as a photographer is to “discover what we’ve made of the places we inhabit and, by implication, who we’ve become as a people.”

Events related to the exhibition include a panel discussion April 13 at 5 p.m., which will examine the political aspects of imaging landscapes. The discussion will focus on the intersections and rifts between images and actual landscapes while raising intriguing questions about the beauty and sustainability of the natural world. Panel participants include Dr. Taylor Stein, University of Florida professor of ecotourism, Ben Martinkus, UF visiting assistant professor of photography, and Dr. Rick Stepp, UF associate professor of anthropology and Latin American studies. April 18 at 12:30 p.m., Southall will give a gallery talk as part of the Earth Day Festival at the Harn Museum of Art and Florida Museum of Natural History. He will explore how the featured landscape photographs reveal the beauty of the natural world and expose the challenge for photographers to idealize or criticize people’s relationships with their environment.

Landscape Perspectives is made possible by the Sidney Knight Foundation. The exhibition is on display until Aug. 30.

Admission is free. For more information call 352-392-9826 or visit

Samuel P. Harn Museum of Art
The Harn Museum of Art at SW 34th St. and Hull Rd. is one of the largest university art museums in the country with nearly 7,000 works in its collection focusing on African, Asian, modern and contemporary art and photography. The museum enhances the activities of the University of Florida and serves a culturally diverse audience through educational programming. Admission is free. Museum hours are 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and 1 to 5 p.m. Sunday. Parking is free on weekends. The Camellia Court Café is open seven days a week from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. For more information call 352-392-9826 or visit

Media contacts:
Tami Wroath, Director of Marketing and Public Relations
352.392.9826 x116

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