TCC PHOTO | GALLERY is proud to announce our April exhibit, and an Earth Day celebration event, Heal Our World exhibit and Film Screening night with Blue Earth photographers, John Trotter from New York, NY, Tammy Cromer-Campbell from Longview, TX, and Benjamin Drummond and Sara Joy Steele from Seattle, WA that opens April 7th, 2011 during ArtWalk. The exhibit will be held in TCC PHOTO | GALLERY, located at 207 N. Center St. and continues through June 18, 2011. The Screening of the short documentaries that compliments the exhibit will be held at 8pm at the Gregg County Historical Museum Education Center. Following the presentation will be a panel discussion with the photographers via Skype. The event is free and open to the public.
A dramatic image can change our perception and alter our understanding of a subject. This idea defines the mission of Blue Earth: to raise awareness about endangered cultures, threatened environments and social concerns through photography. By supporting the power of photographic storytelling, we motivate society to make positive change.
Heal Our World will help the Longview audience to understand the reason’s to believe that what we all do – effects the other. To quote Chief Seattle: “All thing are connected… Man did not weave the web of life: he is merely a strand in it. Whatever he does to the web, he does to himself.”
The three multi-media presentation’s, accompanied by a photographic exhibition reveal the impacts of climate change on local communities in the American West, loss of the Colorado River Delta in Mexico, and the Heroes of the Gulf.
NO AGUA, NO VIDA
The Thirsty Colorado River Delta
The writer Wallace Stegner once called the arid American west our “Geography of Hope.” Its vast skies and towering mountains promise a future of limitless opportunity. But at what cost have we watered this living mythology? We have compelled a once wild, red, living force — the Colorado River— to nourish our vision of the urban/industrial landscapes of Eastern states on a land of little rain. Without the Colorado River, civilization as we know it in the West would vanish.
These photographs are part of an ongoing project examining the consequences of creating a paradise of lakes, lawns and farms where none should be. The Colorado itself only rarely now makes its ancient rendezvous with the Sea of Cortez and the people of its Delta, the most affected and least powerful party on the Colorado, worry that the remaining water that sustains them and the land where they live will soon evaporate north of the border.
John Trotter worked as a newspaper photojournalist for fourteen years until March 24, 1997, when, while on assignment for The Sacramento Bee, he was nearly beaten to death by a half-dozen young men. During his long recovery from that attack he photographed Sierra Gates, a brain injury rehabilitation residence, where he had lived after his release from the hospital. A book of those photographs is forthcoming.
On the fourth anniversary of his attack, Trotter took the first pictures for his project on the Colorado River Delta, in Mexico.
He has lived in Brooklyn, New York, the Oakland of Manhattan, since 2000.
Heroes of the Gulf/Dying for Profit
With Fruit of the Orchard | Environmental Justice in East Texas successfully published as a book, and knowing that Winona’s environmental injustice problems are not limited to Winona, it was time to expand the project to to include other communities in East Texas and the Gulf Coast struggling with environmental injustice. The working title is Dying For Profit.
With the largest environmental disaster in our nation’s history still unfolding and the egregious efforts of BP trying to say – all is well now, this story is now a part of Heroes of the Gulf. In the beginning all cameras were on the Gulf and what was happening to the people and their environment. Now with the well capped, the cameras have gone. The national news thinks the story is over. The people feel abandoned. The people in the communities truly believe they are experiencing first hand the effects of toxic exposure from the oil and the dispersant. BP and the US Government say that the Corexit is no longer being sprayed since they capped the well. People living in the communities believe otherwise. Now the Dolphins are dying off in record numbers. This story is far from over. Many scientists report that the Gulf will be experiencing the environmental effects for years to come. I will introduce you to some of the Heroes on the Gulf. Those that are trying to keep their culture alive.
Tammy Cromer-Campbell is an award winning American photographer best known for her work as a social documentary photographer and speaker. Cromer-Campbell received her Associates of Applied Arts degree in commercial photography from Kilgore College, Kilgore, Texas under the direction of O. Rufus Lovett. She continued her education by taking workshops from the masters in photography, such as Arnold Newman, Ruth Bernhard, Michael Kenna, Keith Carter, John Sexton, and others. The University of North Texas Press published, Fruit of the Orchard/Environmental Justice in East Texas. She’s received many honors and awards including Blue Earth s first ever cash grant, in 1999, for Fruit of the Orchard. Her work’s included in public and private collections internationally such as the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, the Museet for Fotocunst, Belgium, and others. Fruit of the Orchard won a 1st Place under entertainment and culture in the Green Dot Awards and Cromer-Campbell is a 2009 National Women’s History Project Honoree for the Women Taking the Lead to Save Our Planet. Her work is one of the 10 masters featured on the Holga Inspire website http://www.holgainspire.com
FACING CLIMATE CHANGE
Illustrating Global Change through Local People
Benjamin Drummond with multimedia stories by Sara Joy Steele
Climate change is a global problem, but every community has a local story. Whether the impacts are direct or make existing challenges worse, these are the stories society needs to know. We have to learn them from each other, see them in the news, make art about them and discuss them in our schools. After all, people cause, face the consequences of, and must collectively stop this climate crisis. But to mobilize global effort we must generate local will.
Facing Climate Change is a long-term documentary project that tells the story of global change through local people. From semi-nomadic reindeer herdsmen in the Arctic to wildfire fighters of the American West, Benj and Sara use photography and multimedia to document the lives of people around the world as they confront and adapt to the complex issues surrounding global warming. This project began with a series of stories about Sámi reindeer herders in Norway, volunteer glacier monitors from Iceland and fishermen of the North Atlantic. Benj and Sara are currently working in the American West.
As a documentary team, Benjamin Drummond and Sara Joy Steele have been telling stories about people, nature and climate change for almost a decade. Over the last two years their personal project, Facing Climate Change, has been featured in Photo District News, Orion Magazine and Mother Jones, in exhibitions from the Ansel Adams / Mumm Napa Fine Art Gallery to Houston Center for Photography, and as a multimedia presentation shown at a variety of venues, from colleges and prisons to art galleries. Their work has been awarded Nau’s Grant for Change, a Blue Earth Lottery Project Grant, and the Our World Portfolio Review Orion/Photo Award. Benj and Sara are currently based in Seattle, Washington.