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The Enveloping Landscape: A Contemplative Photographic Journey

January 16, 2021 @ 9:00 am - 5:00 pm
|Recurring Event (See all)
January 16 – May 2

Event Details


January 16, 2021


9:00 am - 5:00 pm

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The Enveloping Landscape: A Contemplative Photographic Journey is a visual celebration of the transformative power of place-based education. In this first-ever collaboration between the Arboretum’s Exhibits and Adult Education programs, images from award-winning documentary photographer Susan Patrice join those of 22 student photographers in a breathtaking exhibit that explores the ways that we are indelibly shaped by place. Through their images, these photographers reveal not only the rich biodiversity of Southern Appalachia, but a renewed sense of kinship with their local landscapes found through photography.

What began as a documentary photography project launched by Patrice in 2016 became a collaborative Arboretum workshop led by the artist in early 2020. The project invited photographers of all levels to return each season to focus their gaze on what called to them in the landscape — deepening a contemplative practice of seeing, knowing and caring for a place. When everything abruptly changed in March of last year, this photographic community wasted no time in moving online. What seemed like an unnatural distance imposed by technology became a path into both familiar and uncharted places. This exhibition chronicles these photographers’ year-long journey, inviting viewers to step into an intimate world where the landscape is alive, waiting to be met, understood and entered.  

The Enveloping Landscape: A Contemplative Photographic Journey is on display daily January 16 – May 2, 2021, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., inside the Baker Exhibit Center. Face coverings are required for visitors ages 5 years and older.

Exhibit support for The Enveloping Landscape: A Contemplative Photographic Journey is provided in part by The North Carolina Arboretum SocietyAsheville Citizen-TimesRomanticAsheville.com Travel GuideSmoky Mountain Living Magazine; The Laurel of Asheville; and Henco North Creative Imaging.

Image: Susan Patrice, Enveloping Landscape #1, archival pigment print, 45 x 45 inches, © Susan Patrice


Interested in Learning More?

The journey continues! Begin a contemplative practice in your own enveloping landscape with the following spring 2021 offerings from Adult Education Programs.

Listening Awe Walk

Onsite | Thursday, April 22; 3 – 4:30 p.m.

Aurality, Wonder, Environment. Musician and environmental soundscape artist Tyler Kinnear takes participants on a Listening Awe Walk designed to deepen an aural connection to the local soundscape. Learn to give your ears priority and listen to the sounds around you.

Register Here

Contemplative Photography and The Enveloping Landscape in Spring

Online | Fridays, April 23, 30, May 7 and 14; 3:30 – 5 p.m.

Deepen your intimacy with your surroundings and the natural world through photography. Four Zoom-based class meetings led by Susan Patrice include photographic assignments, rich sharing and discussion and supportive critiques.

Register Here

Seeing Beauty: A Contemplative Photography Awe Walk 

Onsite | Sunday, April 25; 3 – 4:30 p.m. 

Stroll through the Arboretum’s gardens and forest under the guidance of documentary photographer Susan Patrice, who will help you look at the landscape through new and loving eyes.

Register Here

(Limit 10 participants. If section closes, please sign up on the class Wait List. Additional sections will be added based on interest.) 

Coalescence, Contemplation and Creation: A Conversation on Nature-Inspired Contemplative Practice

Online | Tuesday, April 27; 7 – 8 p.m.

Join us for an online series of conversations on coalescence — crossing mediums and bridging disciplines — to discuss a nature-inspired practice of caring for the places and people we love. Special guest: Tyler Kinnear, musicologist and sonic artist.

Register Here

Poetry of Place Retreat for Makers: Nature-based Expressive Arts

Online/Onsite Hybrid |  Three Sessions: Friday, April 30; 3 to 6 p.m. | Saturday, May 1; 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. | Sunday, May 2; 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Give mindful attention to the power of place with this three-day retreat for makers, including two Awe Walks. You will be guided through creating a simple book to use as a container for the weekend’s reflecting, writing and imaging practice. 

Register Here