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“To Grow a Farmer” by Wesley Bernard to Open at SUNY Cobleskill

Cobleskill, NY – SUNY Cobleskill is pleased to announce the opening of “To Grow a Farmer”, an exhibit of original photography by Wesley Bernard. The exhibit will be presented at the College’s Grosvenor Art Gallery, in conjunction with the Institute for Rural Vitality’s Center for Arts and Culture. The public is invited to the opening reception at the Grosvenor Art Gallery on Thursday February 27, from 4 pm to 6 pm.

Oneonta-based photographer and educator Wesley Bernard offers the viewer a visual narrative of cultures and their stories. “To Grow a Farmer” shows an aspect of contemporary farming in upstate New York and specifically the vital, hard-working, creative, and proud farmers in and around the Oneonta area, where Bernard teaches. The exhibit is comprised of a series of portraits of legacy farmers who have found innovative ways of surviving in this economic climate, as well as families or individuals who have managed in unique ways to start and sustain new farms.

“My personal work has always centered on the relationship of humans to our environment,” says Wesley Bernard. “I am interested in how we cultivate and shape the land in order to survive. To photograph the farmers in the region where I live and work is a natural continuation of this theme.” Bernard is currently an Assistant Professor teaching traditional film/darkroom and digitally based photography classes at SUNY Oneonta.

Taken outside yet using studio lighting, the inspiration for the style of these portraits comes from the life size dioramas in the American Museum of Natural History. The project was recorded on color negative film using a mechanical medium format camera that was manufactured during the 1970’s.

Bernard believes in sharing the benefits of his work with his subjects. Half of the proceeds of the photographs are given to the farmers pictured.

The exhibit is free and open to the public from February 27 until April 9. The Grosvenor Art Gallery is located in Old Gym. Free on-campus parking is available. At the opening reception, light refreshments will be served and a cash bar will be available to those age 21 and older.


This release was initially issued by SUNY Cobleskill, 02/20/20

Wesley Bernard: Feature Photo

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