Photographer’s work captures beauty of Sierra
A solo exhibit of Shannon Montana’s photography titled “Homecoming” will be on view March 18 through April 18 at GRAfx 8 Media Group and Robin’s Frame House, 1614 Highway 395 North in Minden.
Everyone is invited to join the artist for an opening reception with wine tasting and hors d’oeuvres from 4 to 7 p.m. March 17 hosted by The Bank – Parlor & Pub at 1596 Esmeralda Ave. Music and poetry will complement the evening, including a reading by Nevada poet, Shaun Griffin; musical performances by David Jobe, jazz guitarist; Willie Webb, Native American flute; and Sierra Montana and Cody Griffin on piano.
“This body of work titled ‘Homecoming’ is an invitation to view a mere glimpse of the vulnerable beauty that haunts my dreams – a ‘come hither’ glance at the most beautiful and varied landscape I’ve ever known. The images were captured in the Sierra Nevada regions of northern Nevada and California. Here is the most beautiful place on Earth, and though my heart has never left it, this work embodies my homecoming as I strive to preserve its beauty,” Montana said.
“My aim is to introduce others to the wonders of nature so that the environment and the issues that threaten to destroy it are no longer faceless issues. The entire project is comprised of 40 20-by-30 inch original photographic images of the fragile environment of the Sierra Nevada and Great Basin that were made within a 100-mile radius of Minden.
“I am primarily a self-taught photographer who fell in love with the camera at the age of 11. It was then that an elementary school teacher taught me to shoot and develop photos, using a homemade pinhole camera and a converted janitor closet for a darkroom,” Montana said.
“During my 20s I lived in Virginia City, Nev., where I co-founded the Virginia City Photographers Guild. The guild was a working playground for experimental and historical photographic techniques. My work at the time was in black and white, and I developed and printed my own work. I was privileged to have as mentors and friends some of Nevada’s finest visual and literary artists. Their commitment to and love of the arts has left a lasting impression on my work and on my perception of humanity.
“The move to the Carson Valley gave me access to a new and growing artist’s community though it meant losing my darkroom space. I began my transition into color photography under the tutelage of Ron Walter, a master nature photographer. I began building a new portfolio and my work has taken on new meaning and a completely new direction.
“When I go into the backcountry, nature will sometimes reveal herself for my camera in her formidable beauty. The catch is trying to bring the images forth so others can gain an appreciation for what is just beyond their home and hearth.
I am committed to offering a window to the natural world so others might enjoy a sense of wonder and admiration for it. Perhaps, those viewers will become the caretakers of our planet.”
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