Friday, April 19, 2013

Featured Artist: Clyde Butcher

         Big Cypress National Preserve - Western Everglades

Like the work of Ansel Adams, Clyde Butcher’s remarkable photographs gives us an access to nature we rarely see or experience. They not only reveal the intimate and majestic beauty of the Everglades – and the need to save this fragile environment – they also remind us of the abiding kinship we mortals share when we work together to preserve these magnificent places. Butcher’s art is a national treasure.

Clyde Butcher’s powerful black and white photographs explore his personal bond with the environment. The exquisite beauty and depth of his work draw the viewer into a relationship with nature. For more than fifty years, he has been preserving on film the untouched areas of the landscape. His images are captured with an 8”x 10”, 11”x 14”, and 12”x 20” view camera. The large format camera allows him to express the elaborate detail and textures that distinguish the intricacy of the landscape. The photographs range in sizes from 8x10 inches to 5x8 feet. 

Clyde looks to the wilderness to answer questions that are probably very different from questions scientists ask. For Butcher, wilderness is a sacred necessity. He believes the mysterious spiritual experience of being close to nature is restorative and that discovering the intimate beauty of the natural world is healing to the human soul. 

Although Butcher will always be identified with the Everglades, he is deeply committed to recording precious landscapes throughout the world. The beauty and importance of Butcher’s photography quickly earned widespread recognition resulting in museum exhibits in the United States, an exhibit at the National Gallery of Art in Prague celebrating the new millennium, and a request by the United Nations to photograph the mountains of Cuba to celebrate The Year of the Mountains.

Clyde has been honored by the state of Florida with the highest award that can be given to a private citizen: the Artist Hall of Fame Award. He was also privileged to receive the Lifetime Achievement Award from the North American Nature Photography Association and given the honor of being Humanitarian of the Year for 2005 from the International University. He has also received the 2011 Distinguished Artist Award from the Florida House in Washington DC and the Sierra Club has given him the Ansel Adams Conservation Award, which is given to a photographer who shows excellence in photography and has contributed to the public awareness of the environment.

Clyde has completed six Public Broadcasting programs on the environment of Florida, with three of them being award-winning documentaries. Much of his work can be seen in his numerous books. The most recent being America the Beautiful, a table top collection of his work from across the United States and Portfolio II – Florida, a collection of images from Florida. 

A large selection of Clyde’s photography can be seen at his Venice Gallery & Studio in Venice, Florida, and at his Big Cypress Gallery, which is located on thirteen acres in the center of the Everglades, mid-way between Naples and Miami on the Tamiami Trail (Hwy. 41), in the Big Cypress National Preserve. The gallery is surrounded by more than a million acres of National Park wetlands and cypress strands of wild Florida.

For more information on Clyde check out his website  "HERE"

                Crystal River - West Coast - FL

         Big Talbot Island State park - Northeast Coast Florida


Mike Johnston said...

I had never seen the "Crystal River" photo before...wonderful. Thanks Gary.

Gary Nylander said...

I'm so very happy to be able to have shared, Clyde's amazing work. I too think "Crystal River" is a wonderful photograph.

All the best,