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Eye of the Beholder 2009 exhibit part 2

Here are a few more pieces from our guest curators for Eye of the Beholder II.

Behnaaz Irani, a UAA graduate student and a library worker at the time, was inspired to write a poem.


Ode to a Sourdough
By Behnaaz.
There was a foregone time,
Perhaps in a dream
When simplicity of mind
And heart did seem
In every man, Lost in a dream
By night or by day
He trod forth cumbersomely
On his prodigious way!
Midnight sun shimmering high
Brown-white ptarmigans quivering low.
Companions all,
To an old man’s woe.
The McKinley’s they swelled
with pride, Covered in a snowy veil of white.
A dark blanket; A starry night
A scarf of blue, A frozen delight
Kept careful vigil
Over the naked man’s dream.
Ah, Men and their evanescent dreams
Having heard the call; They come
shaking and shivering,
Over hills and dales and falls.
Some come searching
For gold;
Some come with nothing at All.
O Ye lovely northern Skies! O Ye elegant Birches!
O Ye mystic majestic Mountains! O Ye ever-flowing Streams!
If only you could speak!
What marvels and mysteries of the human will
would you bespeak!
Perchance within the human heart,
Embedded deep in the darkness lies.
Hope and Love, shedding beacons of light
O’er the path
Of an old sourdough’s plight!

Cody Swanson, a photography student at UAA, took the photograph, printed it out, and created new ones. Here are his thoughts:

As a photographer, I see the world in photographs, and hence photographs as pieces of the world. I look at an image and visualize its location in the real world, imagine the time the shutter stayed open, what happened just after the camera closed its eye. I imagine figures moving out of their stuck places, forms rising, light shifting, sounds passing through, a smell perhaps.
In this particular photo I immediately noticed the depth of field created by the four individuals. Without the four men standing or crouching in their activities, there is only a flat plain of land and hot steam taking over. My eye jumps to the man in the foreground. He is in focus, but the other individuals each draw your eye progressively into the distance; the man placing a pot over a fumarole, the standing man taking notes, and the crouching man–he is no less important there in the foggy distance.
So when viewing this photo, the men seemed to pop out of the flat land. I see the flaps of their coats blowing, imagine sounds of steam and silence, and I smell the scents of sulfur and stew mingling in the air. I almost want to bring my nose close and smell. Place my ear to the flat surface and listen. But for now I just cut them out and give them life again.




Even more coming soon!

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