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DESERT TREASURE Exhibition with Alice Cazenave

December 11, 2022 @ 1:00 pm - 3:00 pm


The Resident Artist Program in Silver City is delighted to present a pop-up show and artist talk with photographic artist and researcher Alice Cazenave of England on Sunday, December 11.

Cazenave will exhibit photographic artworks from her project “Desert Treasures: Colours of the Comstock.”
Doors open at 1pm, and Cazenave will discuss her photographic art and research at 1:30pm.

Christmas cookies, hot cider and light refreshments will be served.

About the installation and artist talk:

As part of her two month residency with the Resident Artist Program, Alice Cazenave has been exploring historical connections between silver extraction from desert landscapes, and early analogue photography (silver is used to coat photographic film and papers). She has been making photographic chemistries out of desert plant species, including yellow rabbitbrush, which grows abundantly in alkaline soils typical of ex-mining sites. She has been using these to develop films and photographs. Through this work, she investigates the roles of ecologies in enabling photographic industries, through the minerals they produce and pollution they absorb.

Cazenave is “interested in people’s stories of silver, and its power in changing landscapes, ecologies and lives.” Her PhD project involves tracing the journeys of silver as it is extracted from the earth and processed into analogue photographic films and papers.

During the December 11th event, she’ll show and discuss a series of miniature pinhole photographs documenting Silver City and its surrounding landscapes. The series was developed in rabbitbrush and sagebrush chemistries.

“These images are representationally and materially of Silver City and its local ecologies,” Cazenave explains. “Despite using black and white photographic paper, the experimental uses of plants and rocks bring their own colour tones to the works.”

The exhibition will take the form of an installation on the handcrafted wooden table in the Schoolhouse. She’ll also be showing a series of lumen prints, 35mm film processed in rabbitbrush, and pennies plated in silver extracted from waste photographic chemistry.

Start date, end date & times: Sunday, December 11. Doors open at 1pm; artist talk at 1:30pm. Event ends at 3pm.

Venue: Silver City Schoolhouse (community center), 385 High Street, Silver City, NV 89429 (3 miles south of Virginia City

About Alice: Alice Cazenave’s photographic work has been published in The British Journal of Photography, The Guardian and the New York Times. She has exhibited internationally, and gives guest lectures at institutions such as The Science Museum, London. She’s co-developer at the Sustainable Darkroom in London where she researches lower-toxicity, plant-based chemistries as substitutes for traditional darkroom materials. She lectures at Canterbury Christchurch University and is undertaking a PhD at Goldsmiths University, London.

Sponsored by: This event is sponsored by the Resident Artist Program in Silver City and the Ray A. Isaac Endowment for the Arts. Artists, musicians and writers from around the world stay at McCormick House for up to several months in exchange for offering free public performances, workshops, poetry readings, etc. in Silver City and other communities in the Northern Nevada region. Silver City is located within the historic Comstock region three miles south of Virginia City.


December 11, 2022
1:00 pm - 3:00 pm
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Silver City School House
385 S. High St
Silver City, NV
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