Flag Over Water

Flag Over Water

Flag Over the River

May 5, 2019

Near the intersection of Orchard and Park Streets in Hardin, Illinois

39° 09’ 06” N 90° 37’ 05” W  Elevation 440

The first image of the day was created on the Illinois River where it was expanding into the town of Hardin, Illinois. A block away, men were stacking sandbags to protect a house, and a popular riverside restaurant had a ring of sandbags around the parking lot and a temporary sign that read “carryouts only”.

 

 

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On the Illinois River

On the Illinois River

As the flood of 2019 was reaching crests in towns along the Missouri and Mississippi Rivers, we set out to see what was occurring on the Illinois River north of its confluence with the Mississippi River, just north of Alton.  For about 75 miles, the Illinois River runs parallel to the Mississippi, creating a wedge of agricultural land between the two rivers, 4.5 miles wide at the Hardin, Illinois in the south and 47.5 miles wide in the north at Quincy.  As we drove north from Alton on Sunday, May 5, we saw the flood’s effect.  Roads were closed (or should have been) because they were covered in water. Families were filling sandbags in the Meredosia City Park. Men were stacking sandbags to protect a house in Hardin, Illinois, not far from a popular riverside restaurant that already had a ring of sandbags around the parking lot and a sign, “carryouts only.” In Hillview, Illinois, the creek in the middle of town had receded after it overtopped its banks a few days earlier.  We drove on gravel roads over levees separating agricultural land from the rivers and even more cautiously on roads that seemed to lead over the top of the levee to the valley below, only to be met by the swollen Illinois river on the other side.

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Getting Ready for the Lower Mississippi RIver

Getting Ready for the Lower Mississippi RIver

Evening light filters through one part of the new cairn in Libby’s studio. She is making a new series of sandblasted cairns in preparation for our journey on the lower Mississippi RIver. Beginning in May, we’ll pack these new cairns with parts of cairns that were used on the Upper Mississippi and Missouri rivers and follow the river to the Gulf of Mexico..

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March 2019 activites

In addition to the six large transparent images at the Lambert International Airport and the exhibit Art Marks: From Minnesota and Montana to the Confluence at the Bonsack Gallery, John Burroughs School, 755 Price Road, St. Louis, Missouri, 63124 through April 10, Watershed Cairns will be giving talks, and attending receptions,

Knowing our Place, a community discussion about our region between the Rivers, hosted by St. Fransican Sisters of Mary from 1:30 - 3:30 p.m. on Wednesday March 20, 2019 at the May Center on the SSM DePaul Hospital Campus, 12303 De Paul Drive, Bridgeton, MO 63044 will feature a talk by Watershed Cairns artist Libby Reuter, river story teller Dean Klinkenberg, and Missouri Coalition for the Environment water advocate Maisah Kahn.  No charge, Reservations required. email rhutchins@fsmonline.org 


Missouri Coalition for the Environment is hosting a special reception at the Bonsack Gallery from 2-4 on Sunday March 24. $20  tickets availablehttps://moenvironment.org/events2/cairns-exhibit

Libby Reuter will be presenting images of Watershed Cairns work on the Mississippi and Missouri River in her talk Where's the Water at 7 p.m., Wednesday March 27 at the Webster Groves Presbyterian Church, 45 W. Lockwood Avenue, Webster Groves, MO 63119. The public is invited. Admission is free, no registration required


Bonsack: Dam image

Bonsack: Dam image

Canyon Ferry Dam is the second Missouri River image in the Art Marks exhibt at the Bonsack Gallery in St. Louis. Not a typical image for us, but I thought it was important to include a dam image because the fifteen dams on the Missouri ( most built 50 years ago) provide recreation, energy generation, and irrigation in the West. Opening reception for the exhbit is Friday,February 22, from 5:30 - 7:30. The show runs until April 10

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Lambert AIrport

The St. Louis Lambert Airport installation was installed in November and will remain until next fall. I want to share some more images of the the six large transparencies in light boxes in Terminal 1, This photo was taken during the install and shows the Silo, No Till in the background and the Sunset Crystal images on the open light box door near the A concourse.

upcoming exhibit

Ian Breidenbach has invited Watershed Cairns to have work in this exhibit dealing with the methodologies and strategies for creating a utopian society at the Provincial in Kaleva, MI. We’ll have a digital slide show of some of our work. Water is essential and a utopian society, or even a rational one, would value and protect fresh water.

Waters Edge opening reception

Waters Edge opening reception

This photo by Rusty Freeman shows the Confluence Cairn installed outdoors at at the Waters Edge Art Walk at the Audubon Center Riverlands in East Alton, Missouri on Saturday, November 10, 2018. To the right of the cairn is Danne Rhaesa’s piece memorializing endangered and extinct bird species. in the background, the city of Alton, Illinois is visible. RIch Vaughn lit the art for this special evening event. After the Art Walk, Libby Reuter installed the 70-inch-tall carin with Joshua Rowan’s three Confluence photographs in the Center where they can be viewed through December. Thanks to Penny Schmidt for envisioning and curating this exhibit with Danne Rhaesa, Ann B. Coddington, Sun Smith-Foret, the Principia College Studio Art Program. and Watershed Cairns artists Reuter and Rowan. Many thanks to Ken Buchholz and the Riverlands Audubon staff for welcoming art and artists.

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Waters Edge Installation

Waters Edge Installation

This Red Flame Cairn is part of the Waters Edge exhibit at Audubon Center, RIverLands in West Alton, Missouri. Three of Josh’s Confluence photographs are installed in the classroom and looking good. Last night I assembled this cairn, testing the lights for tonight’s fundraiser opening. They are expecting 120 people for the artwalk. It snowed a little last night and is really cold; 22 degrees is the forcasted nighttime temperature. It should be about 30 degrees when I Set up the Confluence Cairn sculpture outside at 3 this afternoon. Wish me Luck, Libby

Josh can’t make the opening because he is photographing his US Mexico Border series. His last text indicated he was waiting out the rain in Texas.

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Installing Watershed Cairns images at St. Louis Lambert Airport

Installing Watershed Cairns images at St. Louis Lambert Airport

This week we saw the installation of six Watershed Cairns images at the St. Louis Airport. It is so exciting to see the images almost 7 feet tall and glowing. Here is the press release:

 

Contact:  Jeff Lea                                                                                            jrlea@flystl.com

Public Relations Manager                                                                                   314-426-8125

                                                                                                                    (m)  314-795-2235

 

STL Exhibition Highlights Mississippi Watershed in Stunning Photos

Photographer and Sculptor Use Beautiful Markers to Focus on Importance of Rivers

 

(November 8, 2018 – St. Louis, MO) Two St. Louis area artists are sharing unique views of the Mississippi drainage basin by combining photography and sculpture to highlight the wealth and importance of its rivers.  

 

St. Louis Lambert International Airport is proud to unveil Watershed Cairns, an exhibition of six large-scale photographic images featuring dream-like glass markers, or cairns, in dynamic landscapes contained in the Mississippi river basin.  The photographs, enlarged to nearly 7 ft. tall, are exhibited in light display boxes on the passageways between the lower level of Terminal 1 and Baggage Claim.

 

“Water marked with art makes a visual connection between land and water and provides an opening for community discussion about fresh water,” said sculptor Libby Reuter. She and photographer Joshua Rowan have created almost 200 photographic images in their Watershed Cairns series.  Reuter builds the sculptures from found household or antique glass. The cairns are temporarily placed on land or in water to mark the watershed with the glass representing the fragile and beautiful nature of the setting.

 

The Airport exhibition features cairns dwarfed by huge wind mills, aglow at night on the outskirts of a forest fire, centered in front of a typical Midwest grain silo, soaking up a sunset in grasslands, and delicately perched near or right in the middle of a bubbling stream. Their images are traced as far north as Lake Itasca, Minnesota, the source of the Mississippi River. They have traveled as far west as the Centennial Mountains of Montana, following the path of the Missouri River, which flows into the Mississippi north of St. Louis. In 2019, the artists plan to continue to mark the river with glass cairns from St. Louis all the way to the Gulf of Mexico.

 

“The objective is to celebrate the Mississippi River basin’s water wealth—the 40 percent of the continental United States that provides drinking water for 50 million people, and irrigation for 90 percent of the nation’s agricultural exports,” Reuter said.

 

Watershed Cairns will be on exhibit through November 2019 with support from the St. Louis Regional Arts Commission. Libby Reuter and Joshua Rowan were chosen to exhibit in the Lambert Art & Culture Program through the Airport’s seven-member Airport Art Advisory Committee. Current members are Lisa Cakmak, Associate Curator of Ancient Art at Saint Louis Art Museum; Ellen Gale, Executive Director Clayton Chamber of Commerce; Shelley Hagan, Wells Fargo Curator Corporate Art; Leslie Markle, Curator of Public Art, Mildred Lane Kemper Art Museum; Kiku Obata, Founding Principal of Kiku Obata & Co.; Roseann Weiss, consultant with ART+; and design artist and illustrator Carlos Zamora. 

 

The mission of the Lambert Art and Culture Program is to create a visually outstanding impression of St. Louis Lambert International Airport, generate community pride, and ensure that art at the airport continues to complement and build upon the airport’s rich visual legacy. The program aims to highlight the St. Louis region’s unique art and culture, while also showcasing national and international works, focusing on both visual and performing arts. Currently, there are 29 works of art (temporary, permanent or on-loan) on exhibit at the Airport. For more information, visit www.artoftravelstl.com.

 

 

 

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St. Louis Lambert International Airport (STL) is the primary commercial airport for eastern Missouri and southern Illinois serving more than 15 million passengers annually.  STL is an Enterprise Fund Department of the City of St. Louis. It is wholly supported by airport user charges. No general fund revenues are used for the operation, administration, promotion or maintenance of airport facilities. For more information on flights and services at St. Louis Lambert International Airport, log onto www.flystl.com.    

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