CANMORE ­– Simply titled Explore with Me, Jon Handforth’s 10-piece photographic exhibition, opening at Fusebox Coworking Studio on Saturday
(Nov. 10), invites audiences to explore the Rockies through his work. 

Each of Handforth’s photos is receiving a limited edition print run of 10, and will be available for purchase throughout the duration of the show, which runs until Feb. 10. The reception on Saturday will feature a meet-and-greet with Handforth, as well as wine and cheese. 

Handforth chose Fusebox for the display because of its white walls, abundance of natural lighting, and large windows that can provide the context for his photographs by a simple look outside. His work is a selection of photos taken on his many backcountry trips, each of them a compositionally wonderful display of black and white photography that lends elegance to the rugged Rockies. 

“There is elegance, it’s there,” said Handforth. “Nature is really elegant; it’s a matter of looking for those things. People look at the Rockies and they see the big peaks, and yeah, it’s rugged, but within that the Rockies … are beautiful. It’s just a matter of going out and finding that.”

For Handforth, the mountains are a sacred space in a world that moves more urban and for a population that loses its connection with nature. To visualize the sacredness of the mountains Handforth avoided shooting photos in popular tourist destinations for the show, instead taking the path less travelled. 

“I feel like in today’s world, we’ve lost touch with nature, and we’ve lost touch with that part of ourselves,” he said. “My hope is that people will look at my work, and work from other people and just be inspired to get out and get in touch with nature again.”

Although Handforth thinks colour can be a useful tool, he decided to work with black and white for the collection in order to allow photographic composition to tell his story rather than rely on colour. 

“What I like about black and white is it strips away the distraction of colour. You’re forced to rely on composition, lines, texture, and contrast. I’ve always loved black and white,” said Handforth. 

Peter Collins, owner and operator of Fusebox, said that he was happy to display Handforth’s work, and that having artists display their work was always a partial intention of his business. 

“I think when I started Fusebox, my original intention was that it would be a creative hub,” said Collins. “He’s a brilliant photographer (Handforth), and I love his work. I’m looking forward to seeing the completed frame prints on the wall, and yeah, I think I’m going to end up spending some money on his prints.”

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