THE GREAT DIVIDE refers to both a geological feature and a metaphor for
human relationships. Geologically,
it defines the boundary between the
western and eastern watersheds of
North America: water flows east toward the Atlantic Ocean on one side
of the divide, and west toward the
Pacific on the other. Repurposing this
physical geography to figurative ends
raises questions about other divisions
between humans and other animals
(both domesticated and wild), between habitable and seemingly inhabitable landscapes and between phases
in life (which often change course at
so-called "watershed" moments).
The photographs in the Great Divide meditate on these divisions in the physical setting of the Rocky Mountains, from the foothills of the Sangre de Cristos in New Mexico to the glacial landscape along the Montana/Alberta border. The language of division does not necessarily imply that these distances are either insurmountable or fixed. There are necessary contradictions and ambiguities ...