Raw Landscapes of Wyoming

The Campbell County Rockpile Museum is pleased to announce the opening of a traveling exhibit from Wyoming photographer Rita Donham.

Wyoming’s vast deserts, mountains, and valleys have mesmerized Rita Donham for many years.  Capturing the light on natural terrain features and documenting where the wild rivers are born are important work for Donham.  The headwaters are important for the future of our rivers and groundwater. Celebrating the glaciers in the Wind River Mountains through striking imagery has been successful in generating conversations about ice.  Encouraging respect for the “Raw Landscapes of Wyoming” is the goal of Donham’s photographic work.
Since she started working on an old dude ranch in the 1970’s, Donham has been fascinated with Wyoming vistas that roll on forever.  Obtaining a BFA in photography from CU Boulder and a pilot’s license in 1988 helped Donham realize her dreams of aerial photography.  Rita and her husband, Jamie Burgess, own and operate Wyoming Aero Photo with their Cessna 182, cameras, computers, GPS units, and aircraft camera mounts.  Their first contract in Wyoming was the Farm Service Agency’s cropland inventory with 35mm slide film.  Soon the photo industry switched almost completely to digital and they were able to jump into that, thanks to belonging to PAPA, Professional Aerial Photographers Association, who were also making the big change.
Donham has won numerous awards for her aerial landscapes and has displayed the photographic collection “Headwaters” in libraries and public spaces across the state.  Her recent Alaskan Glacier collection, entitled “Dirty Little Glaciers” is on display in Pinedale, Wyoming at Sublette County’s new Weed & Pest meeting room. 

Emphasis on water as our most precious resource is the main theme of the “Headwaters” exhibit.  Much of our Wyoming landscape has been severely compromised in the past 15 years.  These photographs allow us to celebrate the beautiful visual resources we have all around us, and help us think about caring for our land, our rivers and our families.  Included in the exhibit are five photographs of the Powder River that Donham took in late summer of 2013.  Donham is asking for your assistance in identifying the specific areas and ranches that are in the photographs.

For additional information about the exhibit or the Campbell County Rockpile Museum, please call CCRM at (307) 682-5723 or visit www.rockpilemuseum.com.


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