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Visit > Events and Exhibits > Art Exhibit: Albert Rhea
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Art Exhibit: Albert Rhea

Nebraska Habitat 

January 4 through February 11, 2019
9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily 

 
 

About the artist:  

Albert Rhea was born in 1948 in Omaha, Nebraska. He has been interested in photography since high school. His father was a wildlife photographer, and he still uses some of his father's equipment today. He studied photography at Bellevue College where he graduated in 1990. 

  

He is carrying on his father's interest in wildlife photography in the macrophotography realm. To Albert, macrophotography is magical because it takes him into a smaller universe of vibrant colors, exquisite details and extraordinary patterns that can literally take your breath away. This is especially the case when doing macrophotography of wildflowers and butterflies which provide an incredible variety of shapes and colors that could potentially keep him engaged for a lifetime. Macrophotography can be challenging because it involves moving in close and magnifying what is there beyond our normal perception of it. 

  

  

Artist Statement:  

The following is a brief statement about the meaning within my photographic work. The Nebraska Habitat Series consists of limited editions of three to five prints.

To me, macrophotography, sometimes also referred to as close-up photography, is magical because it takes us into a smaller universe of vibrant colors, exquisite details and extraordinary patterns that can literally take your breath away. This is especially the case when doing macrophotography of wildflowers and butterflies which provide an incredible variety of shapes and colors that could potentially keep me engaged for a lifetime. Macrophotography can be challenging because it involves moving in close and magnifying what is there beyond our normal perception of it. Macrophotography is magical realism as seen through other eyes.

Is there anyone who doesn't admire the flight of a spring butterfly?  Flitting from flower to flower to plant, and basking in the warm sun. The butterfly is supreme in the animal kingdom for possessing those qualities we call grace, agility, and serenity. But trouble is brewing in the insect world and it may affect even these harmless and uplifting creatures. The Department of the Interior has nineteen butterflies on their North American endangered species list.   

Dr. Paul Opler, at the Office of Endangered Species, states that it is not the butterfly collectors who have made the species endangered of extinction, but housing development and urban sprawl. Most butterflies depend on a solitary plant for its food. If land is bulldozed and plants destroyed, the butterflies disappear - forever.

There are many butterflies - 475 species alone in North America, making them the second largest group in the animal kingdom, second to beetles. And because of their numbers, we don't see their importance.

Environmentalists know that because the butterfly is so fragile it is an important indicator of the entire ecosystem - and that includes humans. The Xerces Society, a butterfly's preservation group, puts it this way: "Butterflies, since they are so conspicuous and ecologically vulnerable, serve as excellent indicators of ecosystem health". Recent research has shown that butterflies have declined more rapidly than birds and plants emphasising their potential role as indicators. Recent research has shown that butterflies have declined more rapidly than birds and plants emphasising their potential role as indicators.

Study land use policies near you and be alert for habitat destruction. Ask yourself, "How are butterflies faring in my community?"

  

  

 

 

  

  

  

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