Dreams in Dry Places (Great Plains Photography)

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9780803212145: Dreams in Dry Places (Great Plains Photography)
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Against a stark horizon in a harsh climate, settlers in Nebraska everywhere erected monuments to their optimism. The buildings pictured in Dreams in Dry Places are not just famous landmarks like the State Capitol but also humble farmhouses, barns, grain elevators, courthouses, banks, churches, stores, and theaters. They represent every kind of architecture to be found in Nebraska--folk, high-style, commercial, residential, pioneer, and modern; the unexpected and the familiar, the poetic and the prosaic, good and bad. Caught by Roger Bruhn's camera, these structures always suggest the spiritual resources of their builders and inhabitants, who struggled for a livelihood on the Great Plains.

Dreams in Dry Places has an architecture of its own, beginning and ending with images of the natural landscape and in between revealing unexpected continuities among disparate structures and settings, juxtapositions of forms, and the vanities and vagaries of architectural style. Exterior and interior shots are combined to show how a sense of openness pervades design. The 118 photographs are in black and white--the color of dreams. In his introduction Bruhn writes, "With images alone, I hope to make you feel something about striving, about aspirations, about dreams."

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About the Author:

Roger Bruhn is a self-employed photographer and graphic designer who lives in Lincoln, Nebraska. Ted Kooser, the well-known Nebraska poet, describes Bruhn's field of vision in his foreward. Edward F. Zimmer, who supplied notes on the buildings depicted, is historic preservation planner for the Lincoln-Lancaster County Planning Department.

Review:

"In the long sweep of time, all buildings, it seems, are follies--foolish attempts at permanence, set up as backdrops against which we live out our lives. . . . Roger Bruhn draws his wisdom and his understanding of dreams from closely observing buildings. . . . In this book you can see those dreams, indefatigable in their poor clothing of frail wood, or cake-soft brick, or concrete made from little more than fickle, shifting sand. Some of those dreams are simple ones, dreams of shelter and warmth. Others are more complex, more abstract: the dreams of worship, the dreams of government, the dreams of commerce."—Ted Kooser (Ted Kooser )

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Roger Bruhn
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ISBN 10: 0803212143 ISBN 13: 9780803212145
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Roger Bruhn, Ted Kooser (Foreword)
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