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Balance + Disorder : Post-Katrina Landscape Photographs by Aric Mayer

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Here's a tricky question: What happens when someone with the eye and instincts of a fine art photographer covers a big news story as a photojournalist? The short answer might be found in the work of Aric Mayer, whose powerful photographs illustrated Hurricane Katrina's devastation for major publications in the days following the storm and are now on view at Gallery Bienvenu. Working with a bulky Hasselblad film camera in an age of sleek digital SLRs, Mayer recorded Katrina's chaos in nearly mythic images of trucks in trees and beached sailboats stacked like sardines. Alternating such scenes with sublimely beautiful landscapes from Louisiana and elsewhere, Mayer gives us a visual meditation on nature's power and mystery, and how the very forces that gave us life can take it back with such devastating swiftness. -- D. Eric Bookhardt

Through Sept. 30

Gallery Bienvenu, 518 Julia St., 525-0518; www.gallerybienvenu.com

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