Starting this weekend, visitors to the George Eastman Museum will have the opportunity to explore our newest exhibit, Photography and America’s National Parks. National parks are one of America’s treasures- they are spaces of natural beauty that have been set aside in order to protect them. Photography has had a special relationship with these locations throughout their history, and the pieces featured in this exhibit demonstrate this. In order to showcase the photography and the parks themselves, we’ve set up a fantastic lineup of events and activities over the next few months.
A special preview party for the Photography and America’s National Parks exhibition will be held at the museum on Friday, June 3, from 7 to 9 p.m. This is an opportunity for visitors to get in first to see the photographs, and get an overview of the exhibit from Curator Jamie M. Allen. In addition to this, Sean McFarland, whose work is featured in this exhibit, will be doing cyanotype demonstrations. Guests can enjoy a cash bar, light refreshments, and live music. To learn more and make reservations, visit the event page here.
Activities in the Exhibit
While exploring the photographs of the national parks, visitors can actively engage with the pieces in a number of ways. Throughout the exhibit, there are large panoramic photographs of three national parks, including one of George Eastman himself at the Grand Canyon. Just like snapping your photo at these famous vistas in person, we encourage you to share their own photos taken in the exhibition in front of these scenic viewpoints. Then, tag George Eastman Museum on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram using the hashtag #GEMparks, and the museum will collect and share the photos in an album on its Facebook page.
As part of the exhibit, we will be giving out a family guide, which will include games, trivia and activities for individuals of all ages. This helpful guide introduces the reader to the exhibit in a fun and interactive way through games and fun facts. In addition to this, we have stereoscopes available for viewing some of the stereoscopic photographs—this allows the viewer to see the photo as originally intended, and provides depth to the image (see photo to the left, taken by Taina Meller).
Lectures, Artist’s Talks and Live Music
During the summer, we have a number of talks and lectures relating to the exhibit. These include a a travelogue of Yellowstone, the history of Kodak Picture Spots, and how the staff prepared the works for display in the exhibition. Talks by photographers John Pfahl, Willie Osterman, and Sean McFarland offer the opportunity to learn about the works on view from the artists themselves. All of these programs are free to members and included with museum admission.
On Sunday, July 31, we will also be hosting live music that celebrates national parks: Music in the American Wild brings together seven performers and eleven composers—all affiliated with Eastman School of Music—with works inspired by the national parks.
Films at the Dryden Theatre
Did you know there are a number of films that feature national parks as their back drops? We will be screening a diverse range of films that were shot in national parks and forests, from Howard Hawks’s The Big Sky to Spielberg’s Close Encounters of the Third Kind. For a complete list of film screenings, check out the Dryden Theatre homepage.
See you soon at the George Eastman Museum, and remember to share your love of national parks with us through social media using #GEMParks!