Outsider Brings New Perspective to Wyoming Landscape

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Rafal Lukawiecki describes what he sees in his photograph of a tree overlooking the Grand Canyon.

“Maybe 40 years of fighting against the elements, but no matter how much it twists itself, eventually it will fall, but before it does it looks out at this incredibly beautiful canyon.” said Artist and Photography, Rafal Lukawiecki.

And that one reason he loves the shapes and patterns of the mountain west landscape.

“The landscape you have here is different in its color, in its form and in it's pattern,” said Lukawiecki.

Lukawiecki only shoots black and white photography, the traditional way using no printers or computers, just a camera, film, and a dark room to develop his prints.

“I like patterns, I search for patterns. Black and white photography removes the emotional reaction people have because of color, and it makes you focus on a pattern. Your landscape around here is much richer in patterns, I believe, than elsewhere.” said Lukawiecki.

But the focus on our landscape, isn't just about patterns to Lukawiecki, who grew up poor under communism in Poland.

“When I was 12 maybe 13 years old, I was starting to understand what I didn't like about communism, under which we lived at that time.” said Lukawiecki.

But a trip to the American embassy changed all of that.

“I discovered about freedom, liberty, and that attracted me to a certain, maybe imaginary view of the United States, but one which I deeply love, and when I visit the United States and see your landscape, I feel that liberty and that freedom that I learned about as a younger kid.” said Lukawiecki.

And now on nearly his 50th visit to the U.S., Lukwiecki hopes his outside look on Wyoming's landscape will open the eyes of those who live here, to see it in a new way.

“That they see it then in a different way, that because it was taken by an outsider, I have managed to show them a different perspective onto something that is familiar to them.” said Lukawiecki.