There is a particular loveliness to see a place through the lens of a local, a love letter to the place that has defined and refined an individual, a sweet homage to the skinned knees and first loves that happened on its surfaces. The images that graced the walls of the MPLS Photo Center in Northeast, Minneapolis, bring forth a sense of wonder, adoration, and respect for the many landscapes and life forms that Minnesota has to offer.
The exhibit, running until March 13, offers viewers an opportunity to explore the adventurous side of The Land of Lakes and to reimagine the ways in which we all experience the scenes around us. From images of vast horizons across the plains of Minnesota to an up close and personal macro view of plant life only just beginning, the images present a view of life that is new and interesting, and just sweet enough to leave a lasting impression.
For photographer, Brian Peterson, “the State of Wonders project was truly a labor of love,” and that love comes through from every frame. With patience, diligence, and several hours spent exploring, it’s clear to the observer that Brian “enjoys exploring this great state” with his camera in tow to “share the beauty found all around us.”
This exclusive exhibit, hanging in the Photo Center’s Main Gallery, features photographs from Brian Peterson and Kerri Westenberg’s aptly named State of Wonders book. Each photograph features scenes from Minnesota’s diverse and lovely terrain. Walking into the gallery space, I was immediately reminded of what life in the Land of Lakes really looks like.
Coming from a self-proclaimed, “Newspaper guy,” Brian’s photographs capture an honest image of life in all corners of Minnesota. And as onlookers relished in the glow of expertly placed gallery lights, they each emitted a glow of their own. For some, it was a glow that recapitulated a lifetime of memories and scenes just like the photograph hanging on the wall before them. For others, the spark came from the realization that surrounding them just outside of the walks of the MPLS Photo Center are scenes and stories that they never imagined possible. Especially in the dead of winter, while the ground is slippery and frozen solid, and cheeks rosy from the cold, and hands vaguely purple from forgetting gloves on kitchen tables, it can be difficult to remember the beauty of every scene, every season. The glory of Brian Peterson’s photographs is that they are each a reminder of the possibility of beauty and the absolute certainty that Minnesota has it all.