For more than a year, Becky Evans has retraced the paths in “The Klamath Knot,” David Rains Wallace’s classic exploration of this area’s complex rocks, plants and watersheds. Her aim was to follow the Klamath River from one of its sources to the sea.
Beginning at an upper tributary called Spring Creek, she spent the year walking, waiting, looking, drawing and gathering.
Her research took her to the Oregon Caves, Marble Mountains, Mount Shasta, the Smith River and Bear Basin botanical areas, the Scott, Salmon, Trinity and Mad rivers. She witnessed the rare species of algae called Mare’s Eggs at Spring Creek and then traveled on to the Williamson River, Klamath Lake and to Boyles, Copco and Irongate Reservoirs, where she saw the blooms of toxic algae in the high heat of summer.
”Becky has taken this remarkable journey and brings it to the people of the North Coast in an extraordinary exhibition of artistic creativity and talent,” said Sue Natzler of Piante Gallery, where the exhibit debuts with a reception on Saturday during Arts Alive! from 6 to 9 p.m.
”She has allowed the experience of the mountains, rivers and oceans to fill her and reappear in her works of art,” said Natzler. “Each site on her journey through the Klamath Knot presented itself in a different way and the finished work is created and discovered from this long engagement with ‘time’ and ‘place’ and then with paint or paper orsticks or stones or sand or silt.”
Natzler said the exhibition “suggests the process of creation” as well as the complexity of the area called the Klamath Knot: its unusual geology, rare plant forms, diverse tribes, difficult history after “contact,” extremes of weather and extremes in politics and land use philosophy.
The exhibit runs through April 26. Piante Gallery is located at 620 Second St. in Old Town and is open from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday and by appointment. For more information, call 441-1322.