Portraits: People and Other Creatures by Gary Harmatz & David Simonds

calendar icon July 1, 2024 - June 29, 2024

The Blue Hill Public Library will present Portraits: People and Other Creatures, during the month of July, an exhibit of photographs by Gary Harmatz and David Simonds. Gary Harmatz’s photos range from the Canadian arctic to Chuuk Lagoon in Micronesia, Africa, Southeast Asia, and much more. David’s photographs were also captured in distant places, including India, Thailand, Israel and Turkey, but also as close by as the Blue Hill Fairgrounds.  The public is invited to a reception for the show on Friday, July 12 from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m.

Gary Harmatz has been a wildlife, nature, travel, people, and underwater photographer for over 35 years. As a wildlife photographer, his pursuit of adventure and those rare moments of capturing that intimate connection between man and animal have taken him around the planet, throughout Europe, Japan, Southeast Asia, the Bahamas, North and South America, Antarctica and Africa.

David Simonds says that photography “makes us time-travelers. And for some of us, geographic travelers, as well.” Since he was an 11-year-old kid at the Montreal Expo with an “instamatic camera that never stopped firing” many years ago, he says, “my cameras have taken me to many of the exotic places introduced to me at those World Fair pavilions. I am never entirely sure whether my cameras accompany me, or the other way around. It is of no consequence. The outcome is the same. I return from my travels with a camera full of magic, and an imagination full of wonder.”

Gary Harmatz and David Simonds have been buddies, both with and without cameras in hand, for more than 20 years. Their shared passion for photography was immediately put to the test on a bitterly cold day in late November years ago, where they could be seen huddling behind massive boulders at the Bass Harbor Head Lighthouse in search of shelter from the bitter wind which made both fingers and cameras inoperable.

Since then, they have traveled to destinations near and far, on separate paths, to both experience the special quality of light in faraway places, and to capture fleeting moments in time on film, or via digital sensors. What they present at the exhibition is, as David describes,” a selection of those ephemeral experiences, curated by humans and other beings, that would otherwise be lost to time if not for the miracle of photography.”

The exhibit will be available for viewing starting July 1 in the library’s Britton Gallery and Roland Howard Meeting Room, subject to the meeting room schedule. For more information, call the library at 374-5515.