Saturday, May 16, 2009

Reflections of a Spill: 20 Years Later

Reflections of a Spill: 20 Years After the Exxon Valdez
Image from Exhibit Postcard by Douglas Yates

One of the most memorable and emotionally impressive art exhibits that I have seen anywhere will be at the Pratt Museum in Homer, Alaska through June 28, 2009. In somber tones of black and gray, reflecting the viscous color of oil contamination in formerly pristine waters, the exhibit evoked raw emotion and brought tears to my eyes.

On March 24, 1989, the Exxon Valdez oil tanker ran aground off the shores of Alaska, darkening pristine waters. The largest spill in the history of North America left a lasting mark on the coastal communities of Alaska. The exhibit features both art and science by Alaskan artists and scientists as they reflect on the impact of the spill. For more information about the exhibit visit the Homer News

In the Marine Gallery of the Museum is a display of carved wooden seabirds called "Water's Memory". Carved by Alan Bennett, the birds are representative of the tribe Mergini (sea ducks), heavily impacted by the Exxon Valdez Oil Spill. Some populations not yet fully recovered.

The first floor of the Pratt Museum features "Darkened Waters: Profile of an Oil Spill". This exhibit has been on display since 1993, five years after the spill. It graphically and scientifically presents the effects of the spill on the wildlife, habitats, and waters affected by the spill.

This is a must see exhibit if you are fortunate enough to be visiting the charming community of Homer.

1 comment:

Paula Scott said...

I wish I could see the exhibit!
What a compelling image. A simple image that is able to convey such a traegic event that seems to have such lasting effects.