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‘Revisitng Twain’s Mississippi’ photographic exhibit opens Friday at New York Mills center [UPDATED]

Published 9:12am Thursday, September 5, 2013 Updated 11:14am Thursday, September 5, 2013

Historic and contemporary photographs of the Upper Mississippi river opens in the main floor gallery of the Cultural Center in New York Mills Friday.

Historic and contemporary views of the Upper Mississippi River will be featured in the exhibit “Revisiting Twain’s Mississippi.”  The show includes 30 contemporary black and white silver gelatin prints shown paired with cyanotypes of the same views by 19th-Century photographer Henry Peter Bosse.

This exhibit will be open at no cost to visitors in the gallery of the Cultural Center in New York Mills from through Saturday, Oct. 26.

A reception and lecture on the exhibit is scheduled at 7 p.m. Saturday.  Everyone is invited to attend this free show.

Photographer Chris Faust will be honored at the event and will make a presentation at 7:30 p.m.

During the run of the exhibit, the New York Mills Regional Cultural Center will host a free concert at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 18, by Charlie Maguire featuring songs inspired by the Mississippi River and the state of Minnesota.

The Mississippi River has special significance to New York Mills.  The town is uniquely situated on the cusp of the continental divide, where waters drain south via the Mississippi to the Gulf of Mexico or north to the Hudson Bay.

A monument situated on the divide describes the geological and political forces that have shaped New York Mills as a result of its location.

Bosse’s photographs helped him create the most accurate map of the upper Mississippi to date, which made the design of bridges, locks and levees possible. Ultimately, Bosse published Views on the Mississippi River between Minneapolis and St. Louis, Mo.

Some 100 years later, Bosse’s navigational maps in hand, St. Paul native Chris Faust has been carefully re-photographing the same views as Bosse, from exactly the same sites, aided by modern GPS coordinates and the help of the Army Corps navigational maps.

Faust, a biologist by training and an explorer by nature, has by hard work and serendipity, found the means to re-photograph the Mississippi River from the vantage points Bosse made his historic and justly famous Views on the Mississippi River.

Today, Bosse’s cyanotypes are in the collections of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the National Gallery, SFMoMA, the Getty Museum and the Minneapolis Institute of Arts to name a few.

Chris Faust is a prolific landscape photographer who lives in St.  Paul, Minnesota. He earned a BA in biology and a MS in Educational Media from St. Cloud State University starting out his career working in Aquatic Biology as an Aquatic Toxicologist. Faust began his photography career as a Medical Photographer and continued working as a technical photographer and graphic artist at the University of Minnesota.

Faust is best known for his panoramic landscape photographs. From 1990-1996, he created a series of black-and-white images of new suburban developments in Minnesota that depict new structures and spaces not fully-formed or inhabited by people.

A frequent theme in these and other photographs is the intersection of human beings with nature and places where the two interact in provocative ways.

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