Illusions at First Magnitude Brewing Company, Gainesville, Florida

May 13 - August 17, 2015

On a peninsula surrounded by the sea and dotted with springs, lakes, and wetlands, we see what appears to be an unlimited resource - award-winning author and journalist Cynthia Barnett calls it an “illusion of water abundance.” This deceptive mirage floods our brains even as groundwater is depleted, wells are sucked dry, and ecosystems are drastically altered. We want to believe that water is an endless resource, but in reality, this is sadly not the case.

Through a combination of underwater photographs and writing, I hope to inspire in others a true appreciation for our beautiful, but fragile and endangered, aquatic ecosystems. Photography is a way to share both the magic and misery of Florida's springs and to connect and communicate with people in ways that are not possible using science alone. In this exhibit, science, storytelling, and photography blend together to help people better understand our threatened spring ecosystems and our connection to the water in the aquifer hidden beneath our feet.

The time is far past due for us to reflect on what water means to us, how we can both conserve it and develop a new and sustainable relationship with it, and how we’re going to carry on in a water-stressed world. I invite you to begin your reflections here (perhaps with a springs-inspired craft beer in hand!).

illusions at fm