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Special Exhibit

Fast Moving Water: The Hoh River Story

Apr. 23, 2008 – June 8, 2008

The Hoh River valley is home to one of Earth’s last intact temperate rainforests — the Hoh Rain Forest in Olympic National Park — where annual rainfall can exceed 200 inches. In the Burke Museum’s new environmental photography exhibit, Fast Moving Water: The Hoh River Story, acclaimed nature photographer Keith Lazelle uses his keen artistic eye to capture the dramatic beauty of the Hoh River, one of only a few virtually intact and pristine rivers in the contiguous United States. High from its source in the Olympic mountain range, the Hoh River flows naturally, as it has for thousands of years, over 50 miles into its estuary at the Pacific Ocean. The Hoh River valley supports an inspiring array of wildlife: bald eagle, northern spotted owl, marbled murrelet, Roosevelt elk, bull trout, and salmon.

Organized by the Burke Museum in collaboration with the Hoh River Trust as a small traveling exhibit designed to fit in libraries, community centers, and regional museums throughout Washington State, Fast Moving Water: The Hoh River Story will present 14 framed color photographs of the Hoh River ecosystem. Visitors will follow the story of the Hoh River, from its rich history and cultural significance, to the remarkable tale of cooperation among environmentalists, local communities, tribes, government, and the timber industry to protect and preserve the river. Accompanying the lush visuals will be texts and nature sounds by Emmy-award winning sound recordist Gordon Hempton that will immerse visitors in a unique audio experience of one of America’s last great rivers.

The Burke Museum engages the public in conversations about the environment, both regionally and globally, through nature photography exhibits that visually reflect the urgent, changing realities of our natural world. After premiering at the Burke Museum, Fast Moving Water will tour throughout the state. Lazelle's photography and stories from the Hoh will be available in a new companion book, Fast Moving Water: Images and Essays from the Hoh River, published by the Hoh River Trust.

Keith Lazelle

Spare, contemplative images dominate much of Keith Lazelle's work. Incredible colors seem to expand beyond their frames, yet seem wholly contained, inviting further contemplation of the natural world. It should be no surprise, therefore, that Lazelle's pictures evoke Japanese haiku poetry. As with haiku, his images explore both the subtleties and grandeur of nature's presence. "It was a book of photographic translations of Basho's haiku that led me into photography," Lazelle says. "I was fascinated with the images and the photographer's awareness of color and light and every millimeter of composition within the frame."

Today, Lazelle and his wife, Jane Hall (who acts as his agent), live near Quilcene, Washington on the Olympic Peninsula. Some of his clients include: Audubon, Eddie Bauer, Merrill Lynch, Microsoft, Outside Magazine, Safeco Insurance, Seattle Space Needle, and the Nature Conservancy.

Text courtesy of Alaska Airlines Magazine.

Keith Lazelle's images will be featured at the Burke Museum April 24 through June 8, 2008, in the exhibit titled Fast Moving Water: The Hoh River Story.

Owl Creek in winter
Owl Creek in Winter
Photo by Keith Lazelle
Hoh River enters the Pacific Ocean at sunset
Hoh River enters the Pacific Ocean at Sunset
Photo by Keith Lazelle