Ralph Eugene Meatyard’s The Unforeseen Wilderness
August 6, 2021 – February 13, 2022
The upcoming exhibition of Ralph Eugene Meatyard’s The Unforeseen Wilderness celebrates the recent acquisition of a remarkable portfolio of 56 photographs depicting Kentucky’s own Red River Gorge.
In 1967, the Army Corps of Engineers received approval from Congress( to dam the Red River in east-central Kentucky in an effort to control decades-long flooding in the area. In response, the University Press of Kentucky commissioned poet and essayist Wendell Berry to write a book advocating the preservation of the Gorge in its natural state and engaged Lexington photographer Ralph Eugene Meatyard to produce photographs to accompany the text. Meatyard’s photographs, one of the first photographic attempts at environmental conservation in the American South, played a vital role in the decades-long effort to preserve the Gorge.
Find more information about RALPH EUGENE MEATYARD’S THE UNFORESEEN WILDERNESS at the Speed Art Museum.