Photo: Wild by Joe McCaffrey
Las Vegas, N.M. – Highlands University presents an exhibit, Oh, The Places You’ll Go! – Photographs by Joe and Martha McCaffrey, with an artists’ reception April 18 from 3 – 5 p.m. in the Kennedy Hall Gallery, 905 University Ave.
“Our goal is to create an emotional connection between the photographer and the viewer through the use of light, shape and color,” Joe McCaffrey said. “Many of the photographs in this exhibit convey spiritual experiences found in natural landscapes as well as places of worship like Santuario de Chimayo.”
Martha McCaffrey said the photographs celebrate many places in the United States where the couple has lived and visited with a primary focus on New Mexico and the Southwest.
“Our photographs have a geographic and cultural context along with a sense of place – the central theme of this exhibit,” Martha said.
Nearly half of the photographs in the exhibit are Northern New Mexico scenes, from the desolate La Liendre ghost town and the Gallinas River flowing in icy winter to a bright-orange sunset taken at Ft. Union National Monument during the Pecos Wilderness Fire and an architectural stone detail of the historic Las Vegas City Hall with a roosting eagle spreading its wings.
Outside of New Mexico, scenes range from a battered Louisiana lighthouse to a delicate magnolia blossom and a vivid sunrise over Two Medicine Lake in Glacier National Park, Montana. Ancient Anasazi culture is also featured in several photos, including pictographs of five expressive faces in Davis Canyon, Utah.
The exhibit continues through June 20.
The married couple – both Highlands alumni – has shared a passion for photography for more than 35 years, calling their photographs a collaboration. Since returning to Las Vegas in 2007, they have been active in the Meadow City Camera Club, exhibiting their work in several art shows.
Previously, they were longtime members of the Slidell Photo Club in Louisiana 45 miles east of New Orleans, participating in numerous photography exhibits.
Today, Martha serves on the board for the Las Vegas Citizens’ Committee for Historic Preservation. She is a liaison between CCHP and Highlands University media arts students participating in the university’s one-of-a-kind AmeriCorps Cultural Technology Program.
Joe has served on the Highlands University Foundation board since 2006 and is a board member for the Las Vegas Arts Council. The retired physicist teaches a survey of astronomy class at Highlands.
Martha earned her B.A. from Highlands in 1960 with a major in history and a minor in English. She went on to earn a master’s degree in library science from the University of Maryland and was a longtime librarian and media specialist at Mandeville High School in Mandeville, La.
Joe earned his B.S. and M.S. in physics, math and chemistry from Highlands in 1960 and 1961 respectively. He went on to earn his Ph.D. in physics from Colorado State University. He worked at the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory for 30 years as a bench scientist and science administrator. Upon his retirement, he taught a computational engineering class at Mississippi State University for five years.