The public is invited to join famed photographer Clyde Butcher and his wife Niki for the 20th anniversary celebration of the Big Cypress Gallery in the Florida Everglades.
The anniversary weekend activities will take place at Clyde Butcher's Big Cypress Gallery in the Big Cypress Preserve, Western Everglades, during the annual open house on Feb. 16-18. During the three-day President's weekend event, guests are invited to meet the photographer, take guided swamp tours, and learn about Butcher's 20 years of displaying unique and beautiful black and white photography at the gallery.
"Twenty years! It seems like yesterday that we began the joy of hard work creating the dream of Big Cypress Gallery in a setting surrounded by the peace of over a million acres of wilderness," said Clyde Butcher. "The public has been a big part of that dream, and we invite everyone to join with us as we celebrate the twentieth anniversary of Big Cypress Gallery," he said in a prepared statement.
Clyde Butcher and his wife Niki.
Butcher will be in the gallery all three days to greet guests and autograph books from 10 a.m. 5 p.m.
This rare opportunity to meet the photographer will also feature family friendly activities throughout the weekend including speakers throughout the day: Rangers from the Big Cypress National Preserve, Friends of Big Cypress, Friends of the Florida Panther Refuge and more.
There will also be guided wet swamp walks where visitors can explore the beautiful nature preserve right in the backyard of the gallery. Guests interested in taking part in a wet swamp walk are asked to bring a bag lunch and reserve a space online in advance. The times are as follows:
Saturday and Sunday 9 a.m. - 2 p.m., and Monday 9 a.m. - noon. The tours are $50 for each adult, which includes a $25 credit for the gallery, and $25 for children under 18. Kids under 18 are free.
Free guided dry walks will leave every half hour with no reservation required.
Clyde Butcher's black and white photographs explore his personal relationship with the environment. For more than 40 years, he has been preserving on film the untouched areas of the landscape. His images are captured with an 8"x 10", 11"x 14", and 12"x 20" view camera. The large format camera allows him to express the elaborate detail and textures that distinguish the intricacy of the landscape. The photographs range in sizes from 8"x 10" inches to 5'x 8' feet.
Recent projects include work for Florida's "Save Our Rivers" program, the South Florida Water Management District, the D.E.P., Divisions of State Lands, the Bureau of Submerged Lands and Preserves, Everglades National Park, Rocky Mountain National Park, Audubon Society, The Nature Conservancy, River Keepers, and the Wilderness Society. Clyde has been honored by the state of Florida with the highest award that can be given a private citizen: the Artist Hall of Fame Award. He was also privileged to receive the Lifetime Achievement Award from the North American Nature Photography Association and given the honor of being the Humanitarian of the Year for 2005 from International University. He has also received the Heartland Community Service Award from the state of Florida for educating the people of Florida about the beauty of their state. The Sierra Club has given him the Ansel Adams Conservation Award, which is given to a photographer who shows excellence in photography and has contributed to the public awareness of the environment.
A large selection of Butcher's photography can be seen at his Venice Gallery & Studio in Venice, Fla., and at his Big Cypress Gallery, which is located on 13 acres in the center of the Everglades, mid-way between Naples and Miami on Tamiami Trail (Hwy. 41), in the Big Cypress National Preserve. The gallery is surrounded by more than a million acres of National Park wetlands and cypress strands of wild Florida. For more information go to www.clydebutcher.com/events.cfm