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Botanicals Photo Exhibit on September 5

The Branigan Cultural Center proudly presents J.W. Fike’s Photographic Survey of the Wild Edible Botanicals of the North American Continent: Plates in which the Edible Parts of the Specimen have been Illustrated in Color. Opening Friday, September 5, during the Downtown Ramble, the exhibition runs through Saturday, September 27, in our newly renovated Shannon Gallery.

To describe his artistic process, Fike says, “The plant is excavated, arranged in a studio, photographed, then illustrated digitally in such a way as to render the edible parts in color while the remaining parts, less emphatically, read as photograms.” These images beautifully reference early botanical studies, while embracing contemporary techniques of digital imaging, and are vitally relevant to issues of sustainability. “These edible plants grow all around us, in yards, alleys, ditches, and empty lots. Each testifies to our symbiotic evolution with all of life, and function as both metaphor and proof of our intimate tether to the natural world”, says Fike.

Dandelion, C-Print, 16” x 15”, 2011, by  J.W. Fike

Dandelion, C-Print, 16” x 15”, 2011, by J.W. Fike

Fike was born in Birmingham, Alabama in 1970. He earned a BA in Art from Auburn University in Alabama, and an MFA in Photography from Cranbrook Academy of Art in Michigan. His artwork has been shown in over seventy exhibitions across the U.S.  He currently teaches at Estrella Mountain Community College in Avondale, Arizona.

The Branigan Cultural Center is located at 501 North Main Street. The Branigan Cultural Center will be closed for renovation June 30 – late August.  Upon reopening, regular gallery hours are Tuesday through Saturday from 9 am to 4:30 pm. The exhibits and events are free and open to the public. For more information, contact the Branigan Cultural Center at (575) 541-2154 or visit the Center’s website at

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