Janet Dwyer uses a high resolution flatbed scanner to capture images of nature.

Janet Dwyer uses a high resolution flatbed scanner to capture images of nature.

Natural conversation starters

Maple Ridge Art Gallery hosts scanography exhibit.

The Maple Ridge Art Gallery is hosting the exhibition Conversations with Nature, by Janet Dwyer, who uses scanography, a close relative to the process of photography, to capture her subjects.

The exhibit opens May 2 with a free reception from 2 to 4 p.m. and will run until July 4.

Using a super high resolution flatbed scanner, Dwyer invokes a mystical dimension to her work that may owe something to the centuries-old genre of still life.

While she often captures flowers in the peak of their blooming cycle, there is an underlying sense that the process of decay will soon begin, adding an overall poignancy to these images from nature.

The relatively large size of each piece in the exhibition allows for increased engagement from the viewer’s standpoint.

“Objects are placed directly on the scanner glass, rendering magnified detail and affording the potential for larger prints.

This larger scale offers a sense of intimacy and connection to structures within objects that are often too small to be seen,” said Dwyer.

“Hence, the title, Conversations with Nature, that speaks to the viewer’s experience in witnessing tiny details that bear witness to the passage of time and ultimate decay in the natural world.”

Dwyer has spent many years working as a commercial and fine art photographer, gaining recognition through her representation in such publications as Maclean’s Canadian Geographic, Beautiful B.C. and National Geographic.

In 2007, her scanography work won international recognition in the world’s most prestigious photography competition at the Pilsner Urquell International Awards for image Incognito, which took first place  in the professional photographers nature category.