Nature and culture intersect in art exhibition by Scott Jost

Panoramic by Scott Jost (click to enlarge)

The Arts Council of the Valley is presenting Chesapeake Bay Watershed Confluences, a series of panoramic photographs by Scott Jost in June.

The exhibition of Jost’s most recent project will open with a public reception in the Darrin-McHone Art Gallery in the Smith House at 311 South Main Street. The opening reception is in conjunction with First Fridays Downtown on June 4 from 5-7 p.m. The exhibition will remain on view until June 28.

With the photographs of Chesapeake Bay Watershed Confluences, Scott Jost presents striking images of the rivers and communities within the Chesapeake Bay’s 64,000 square mile watershed. His panoramic lens provides elongated, comprehensive imagery of views varying from the sandy shores of Cape Henry on the Chesapeake Bay to the headwaters of the James River in western Virginia. River and stream confluences, as Scott Jost describes, are “sites where varied ecosystems meet. They are often historically important in relation to settlement, industry, commerce, transportation, and defense. Confluences represent important intersections of nature and culture.”

The exhibition, with its focus on the Chesapeake Bay watershed and the vast and varied landscapes that comprise it, follows the human footprint all the way from backyard to ocean. Scott examines the movement and success of societies by, for example, photographing the remains of early 19th century canal locks and aqueducts, while also looking at the ramifications and responsibilities associated with expansion. The conceptual basis of Jost’s photographic work begins with questions such as, “How have humans, past and present, shaped rivers and streams where they live? Can a balance between human interests and natural systems be rediscovered or reinforced?”

Jost will donate 20% of all proceeds from the sale of photographs to support the Chesapeake Bay Foundation. Jost also will feature a separate body of work titled Spring Flowers in the Smith House’s Rhapsody Room. These floral works incorporate extremely shallow camera focus, combining bokeh (a Japanese photography term used to define the pleasing visual qualities found in out-of-focus areas of a photograph particularly around points of light and color with sharply rendered details) to create lush, colorful and pattern-filled evocations of spring.

Currently, Jost is an Associate Professor of Art at Bridgewater College, teaching photography and design. Jost earned his MFA from the University of Minnesota and has since shown in various solo and collaborative exhibitions. He has been featured recently at the Miller Gallery at Bridgewater College, Eastern Mennonite University, Court Square Marketplace, and 150 Franklin Street Gallery in downtown Harrisonburg. Jost is the author of Blacks Run: An American Stream published by the Center for American Places in 1999, and a contributing photographer to The Great Valley Road of Virginia: Shenandoah Landscapes from Prehistory to the Present available from University of Virginia Press.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s