Grays the Mountain Sends

"Roll on Columbia..."


On Display: April 4th – April 27th
Opening Reception: Friday, April 4th 6-9pm
FREE Artist Lecture with Byran Schutmaat: Saturday, April 5th 1-2pm

Throughout April, Newspace is thrilled to present the photography of two artists working in the Western landscape. Bryan Schutmaat’s series Grays the Mountain Sends is an elegy to the small, hardscrabble mountain towns and desolate mining sites scattered throughout the Western landscape. With similar interest in the post-industrialization landscape of the West, Mark Rupert’s “Roll on Columbia…” is a meditation on the passage of time along an iconic Western waterway.

In the Main Gallery – Grays the Mountain Sends

Grays the Mountain Sends combines portraits, landscapes, and still lives in a series of photos that explores the lives of working people residing in small mountain towns and mining communities in the American West. Equipped with a large format view camera, and inspired by the poetry of Richard Hugo, I’ve aimed to hint at narratives and relay the experiences of strangers met in settings that spur my own emotions. Ultimately, this body of work is a meditation on small town life, the landscape, and more importantly, the inner landscapes of common men. – Bryan Schutmaat

Bryan Schutmaat is an American photographer whose work has been widely exhibited and published in the United States and overseas. He has won numerous awards, including the 2013 Aperture Portfolio Prize, Center’s 2013 Gallerist’s Choice Awards, the 2013 Daylight Photo Awards, and the 2011 Carl Crow Memorial Fellowship, among many others. In 2014 Bryan was selected for PDN’s 30 new photographers to watch; in 2013, Dazed Magazine named Bryan one of Paris Photo’s “breakout stars,” and he was chosen as a Flash Forward Emerging Photographer by the Magenta Foundation.  His first monograph, Grays the Mountain Sends, was published by the Silas Finch Foundation in 2013 to international critical acclaim. It won the photobook category in the New York Photo Awards, it was shortlisted for the Aperture/Paris Photo First Book Award, and it was acquired by libraries at the MoMA, New York and the Amon Carter Museum of American Art. Bryan holds a BA in history from the University of Houston and an MFA in photography from Hartford Art School. His photos can be found in the permanent collection at the Baltimore Museum of Art, the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston and numerous private collections. He lives in Austin, Texas and is represented by Sasha Wolf Gallery in New York City.

In the Special Exhibitions Gallery – “Roll on Columbia…”

While humans have occupied the Columbia River Basin for more than 15,000 years now, the commercial exploitation of the region didn’t begin in earnest until European ships first sailed upriver during the early part of the 17th century.

Today, the great river has been tamed, for the most part, and its banks are endlessly pummeled by the waves of chugging barges and enormous container ships connecting the high desert to the sea. Black Cottonwood trees lean precariously toward the rushing water, their exposed roots straining against the wind and pounding waves, while shifting soils whisper tales of ancient hunters, and the movements of bobcat, elk, and river otter, passing in the night.

While these photographs serve as a peculiar sort of record of my attempts to understand the seasonal cycles of the River, and its role in the complex history of the region, they speak more about the flow of time and the accumulation of experience than the precise recording of details.  Lengthy pinhole exposures transform the world into an extraordinary place where flowing water becomes solid, and the wind is seen slithering through the dried grass, while passing ships disappear like the ghosts of some ancient past. – Mark Rupert

Mark Rupert uses a variety of materials and processes including photography, video, sculpture, and installation to explore historical and contemporary ideas that govern patterns of human interaction with the land.  Recent exhibitions include Photo Alchemy, an international exhibition of artists working with alternative photographic processes, and the “Art Contemplates Industry” project and traveling exhibition series which, in partnership with Portland General Electric and the Willamette Falls Heritage Foundation, provides unprecedented access for artists to explore historic hydro-electric power generating stations and their role in the industrial history of the Pacific Northwest. Rupert holds a BFA from Ohio University, and an MFA from the University of Oregon.  He is the head of photography at Oregon College of Art & Craft.

Mark recently gave a lecture entitled Circles of Confusion: Exploring the Boundaries of Photographic Practice at the Portland Art Museum as part of their Brown Bag Lecture Series.


Gallery Hours:
Monday through Thursday 10am-9:30pm
Friday, Saturday & Sunday 10am-6pm

Thank you to the Kinsman Foundation for your ongoing support of the Newspace Gallery.