WEEKEND: Neah Bay life shown through lens of Makah photographer
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Meredith Parker
A gray whale emerging from the Pacific off Tatoosh Island is part of Meredith Parker’s exhibition “Images, from the Beginning . . .” opening this Sunday at the Makah Cultural and Research Center in Neah Bay. The display of some 25 photographs will stay up through June 1.

By Diane Urbani de la Paz
Peninsula Daily News

NEAH BAY — A leviathan rising from the Pacific Ocean, the expanse of Hobuck Beach, young Makah men and women performing their traditional dances . . .

“Images, from the Beginning . . .” shows life in Neah Bay through the lens of a woman who loves this place.

The exhibit of two dozen photographs by Meredith Parker — an artist, writer and the general manager of the Makah tribe — opens Sunday at the Makah Cultural and Research Center, 1880 Bayview Ave., with a public reception from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m.

The show is free with admission to the museum.

“Bring the family,” Parker's invitation reads, “and enjoy an afternoon of photographs, memories, refreshments and laughter.”

For Parker and her Makah people, life began here “at the beginning of the road in Neah Bay,” where she walks the beaches and trails with her camera.

She became a photographer while working at the Ozette village archaeological site in the 1970s.

Parker views her images today as a way to honor her people and their ancestral homeland.

“Meredith is the first Makah person to have a show like this,” said Greg Colfax, a member of the Makah Cultural and Research Center board of directors.

“She is a very, very talented individual,” he said, adding that he is proud of the way Parker represents her tribe.

She marks her second anniversary as the Makah tribe's general manager today, and over the years has served as a volunteer on many boards and committees.

Her work

She has shown her photographs at the Elwha Heritage Center and the Blackbird Coffeehouse in Port Angeles, and at the 2012 Indigenous Film and Arts Festival in Denver. And Parker is a member of the Indian Voices writing group of Port Angeles, with essays included in Tribal Voices: Echo, an anthology of Native American writers.

As she prepared her photos for display, Parker stuck to her adamant belief in keeping her business local: She chose Jeanne Pumphrey at Pixel Perfect Imaging and Karon's Frame Center, both in Port Angeles, for the printing, matting and framing of her photos.

At Sunday's reception, a number of signed reproductions will be for sale, and guests may order prints, matted and framed or not.

“Images, from the Beginning . . .” will stay at the Makah Cultural and Research Center through June 1.

Admission to the center, which is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily, is $5, or $4 for students and for seniors ages 65 and older. Children 5 and younger are admitted free.

For more information, visit www.Makah.com or phone the center at 360-645-2711.

________

Features Editor Diane Urbani de la Paz can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 5062, or at diane.urbani@peninsuladailynews.com.

Last modified: March 21. 2013 4:18PM
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