Desert Perspectives | Art Watch | Bend | The Source Weekly - Bend, Oregon
The Source Weekly’s reporting is made possible by the power of your support. Be a part of it!
Pin It

Desert Perspectives 

Artists showcase their take on water at High Desert Museum

It began a year ago, when The High Desert Museum invited four artists, including local creative laureate Mosley Wotta (Jason Graham), Ka'ila Farrell-Smith, Dana Reason and Harmonic Lab to take field trips into various places in Oregon alongside curators, geologists, archeologists, ecologists, dam technicians and natural resource managers to look at and explore our relationship to water. The result is a fascinating exhibition titled "Desert Perspectives: Water Shapes the West," now on display through Sept. 29.

Mosely Wotta (Jason Graham) in front of his piece titled W.O.E. 1. - SUBMITTED
  • submitted
  • Mosely Wotta (Jason Graham) in front of his piece titled W.O.E. 1.

On the ceiling is an enormous and graceful sculpture created by Harmonic Lab that mimics water. It's calming, beautiful and mesmerizing—the way tides can be, lapping at the shore. Each contemporary artist has taken their own medium to explore the world of water, which, at first, seems simple. There are videos and soundscapes, paintings and music. Alongside the art are displays with information on three basins in the local high desert, including the Klamath, Mid-Columbia and Great Salt Lake basins.

"We are finding that art is an accessible way for our community to explore our mission," says Dana Whitelaw, executive director of the High Desert Museum. Whitelaw finds it exciting to see artists and scientists sharing ideas, then ultimately working on their own to decipher the excursions.

The exhibition even spills out onto the grounds of the museum. Mosley Wotta created leather wraps with his writing and drawings around trees throughout the grounds. Reason, a composer, has installed a soundscape in one of the sitting areas. On a sunny Friday afternoon, I sat alongside the brook, in the trees listening to Reason's composition. Not exactly melodic, but transfixing. The sounds fit perfectly within the shake of the trees, the babble of the brook and the songs of the birds, as if it was harmonizing with all of them.

Desert Perspectives: Water Shapes the West
April 27- Sept. 29
High Desert Museum
59800 US-97, Bend
"Vision Quest Glyphology" by Ka’ila Farrell-Smith - SUBMITTED
  • Submitted
  • "Vision Quest Glyphology" by Ka’ila Farrell-Smith

About The Author

Teafly Peterson

For the last 20 years, I have been working as an artist and an educator. Some days I am better at one than the other. The good days are when I am excellent at both simultaneously. I love those days. I teach a variety of mediums– painting, drawing, photography, writing, film making. Mostly what I teach is how to...
Pin It

Speaking of...


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Today | Fri | Sat | Sun | Mon | Tue | Wed
Prineville Street Fair

Prineville Street Fair - Stryker Park

Fri., May 20, 4-8 p.m. and Sat., May 21, 9 a.m.-3 p.m.
Submitting an event is free and easy.

Newsletter Signup

Get Central Oregon daily news
directly in your inbox

Get Social

Latest in Art Watch

More by Teafly Peterson

  • An Artist's Life

    An Artist's Life

    A tribute to Pat Clark, artist, educator and founder of some of Bend's artistic institutions
    • Nov 24, 2021
  • More »

Want to advertise with us?

For info on print and digital advertising, >> Click Here

© 2022 LAY IT OUT INC | 704 NW GEORGIA AVE, BEND, OREGON 97703  |   Privacy Policy

Website powered by Foundation