Local residents’ photography displayed with Ansel Adams’
Published 8:05 pm Saturday, June 1, 2013
The photography of several area residents will share the spotlight with the likes of Ansel Adams in Fragile Waters, a major exhibition at The Mariners’ Museum in Newport News.
The exhibit, open now through Sept. 2, features the black-and-white marine photography of Adams and living legends Ernest H. Brooks II and Dorothy Kerper Monnelly.
Suffolk resident Subhra Debnath’s photograph, “Rock & Foam,” has been selected to display as part of the Fragile Waters Community Photography Show. The show is a complement to the Fragile Waters exhibition, which features photography by some of the world’s greatest marine photographers.
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While vacationing in Maui with her husband, Debnath was inspired to take some photos of the waves crashing on the shore while the sun was setting.
“Our main goal that day had been to capture a rainbow against Maui’s back drop. While we didn’t see any we instead came [upon] this beautiful sunset, and the opportunity was too good to pass up,” Debnath said.
Debnath’s entry “is evidence of the pure beauty of water and reminds us why we need to preserve and protect it,” she said. “The solid waves of water crashing on the rocks and the beach, breaking into billions of molecules is very literally fragile water and it is a metaphor for how easily it can be destroyed.”
In addition to Debnath’s work, the Community Photography Show will also showcase the work of Kiran Debnath of Suffolk, Baron Poole of Smithfield and Shirley Whitenack of Carrollton. Throughout the exhibition’s lifespan, the public will vote on its favorite photographs and winners will be selected at the end of the summer.
The Community Photography Show accepted a total of 95 submissions of black-and-white water images from the public, which are displayed in proximity to Fragile Waters. Mariners’ Museum Chief Curator Lyles Forbes said the Museum was impressed with the quality of the submissions.
“The images submitted from all around Hampton Roads reflect the wonderful diversity water can be as a source of artistic inspiration,” Forbes said.
Fragile Waters includes images by the 20th century’s preeminent photographer, Ansel Adams, as well as underwater photographer Ernest H. Brooks II and marshlands chronicler Dorothy Kerper Monnelly.
Fragile Waters employs a different tact in showcasing images of the world’s waterways, forgoing color in favor of dramatic black-and-white photography. The exhibition was developed against the backdrop of the 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill and the 2011 events at Fukushima, Japan, with the aim of highlighting the beauty, power and vulnerability of our greatest natural resource.
Fragile Waters features 117 images, with subject matters ranging from an aquifer under Death Valley to the waterfalls of Yosemite to a stories-tall wall of ice in Antarctica.
Fragile Waters includes a number of ways to involve the community. In addition to the Community Photography Show, there are a number of other Fragile Waters programs over the summer, including a June 22 Pinhole Camera Workshop, a July 13 Sun Print Workshop and an Aug. 10 Photography Scavenger Hunt in the Park. Monnelly will lead a nature walk and gallery tour on June 29, and Brooks will offer a lecture on July 24, and a gallery tour on July 25.
Visit www.Mariners-Museum.org/fragilewaters for more information on Fragile Waters and its programs.