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Geographies of the Same Stone

October 7, 2003 to November 8, 2003

As a topic or theme for an ongoing body of artwork the stone we call basalt might seem to be exceedingly specialized. However, from a geographic perspective this rock type has been shaped into such a variety of land forms that one could argue the theme of basalt is hopelessly too vast to portray. In looking at and thinking about basalt, one comes to realize that geographic form is directly related to the rock itself - how it is distributed and how it stands up to the processes of deformation and erosion. Those familiar with the geology of this region understand that the rocks that gives shape to the canyons of the Imnaha and Grande Ronde rivers in northeastern Oregon are part of a vast accumulation of related formations that stretch westward to the sea. These formations are called the Columbia River Basalt. A listing and description of all the canyons, waterfalls, rims, headlands and other land forms that are made of this rock would constitute a book not unlike Lewis McArthur's Oregon Geographic Names.
Indeed basalt is just one kind of rock - but it is also a thousand places I love. The photographs are about the beauty and relatedness of places that share a common but remarkable geologic story.
Terry Toedtemeier
September, 2003