Contact 2011 – Gladstone Hotel – “Black-White”

 

Scotiabank Contact Photography Festival

Gladstone Hotel – 5-22 May, 2011

Below are the images that are presented in this exhibition in response to the theme “Figure and Ground”.

This series of images depicts the current state of a abandoned quarry embedded in the centre of what is now a conservation area. The area was established as a conservation area in 1959, halting all development at that time.  Nearby lands continue to be quarried, with controversial applications for expansion currently being debated. Considered at risk are the habitat for the Jefferson Salamander, Butternut trees and other species.  While the conservation area itself is protected, the risk of impact from the nearby environment is high. Ongoing protection activities continue to struggle to balance the commercial interests of business and the environment.

Mount Nemo, as an element in the Niagara Escarpment, is designated as a UN Biosphere Reserve Area. It includes a portion of the Bruce Trail.  The 50 years since quarrying was halted here has shown meaningful re-growth in the old quarry. While man has done it’s deed, so to speak, nature seems to be having the last word. Gradually the remains of the quarry are naturally being reclaimed and vegetation returns despite the disadvantage left it by the hand of man.

Ironically, there have been discussions to rehabilitate the quarry site. One must wonder if the hand of man would yet again impact the natural process.

I wonder if we ought not simply learn to be patient.

  

Nature does not hurry, yet everything is accomplished.
-Lao Tzu