"On the Land: Three Centuries of American Farm Life" documents five of the oldest family-owned farms in America. The exhibit of Stan Shearer's photographs, with text by Michael Geary, depicts families performing daily tasks that regulate their lives.
Shearer's work, which will remain on display at Carroll County Arts Council Gallery in Westminster through Feb. 21, should strike a chord in a community with deep farming roots, said Hilary Hatfield, the arts council's executive director.
"I think the exhibit talks about the importance of family and how the family unit runs a farm," Hatfield said. "Everybody has a responsibility, from the very youngest to the very oldest.
"The arts council received information about the exhibit through ExhibitsUSA. We looked into a profile of exhibitions and felt this one was most appropriate for the community," Hatfield said.
Michael Levin, arts council president, described the exhibit as representative of Carroll County, where agriculture remains the dominant industry.
"There is art in agriculture. Some of these pictures could be taken five minutes from here," he said.
Leona Dell, a lifelong farmer and wife of County Commissioner Donald I. Dell, attended an opening reception for the exhibit Monday. "It isn't often that you see an exhibit that relates completely to farming. The pictures really show the things that happen on today's farm -- the intensive labor that's required," she said.
"These pictures really reflect the true feelings of farmers. You can tell they are a part of the land that they farm," she said.
Mr. Dell spoke briefly about the importance of farming and the farmer's role in the development of the United States. The Dells' farm, Cranberry Meadow Farms near Manchester, has been in the family for generations.
Kevin Dayhoff, a Patapsco artist and farmer who was "born and TC raised in Carroll County and comes from a long line of Carroll County farmers," said Shearer's black-and-white photographs show a lot of detail.
"[These photographs] capture the artistic essence of farm life," Dayhoff said.
Arts Council Gallery hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays, and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturdays.
Additional photographs are on display at Westminster Bank, 71 E. Main St. The display can be viewed from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Thursday, and 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday. Information: 848-7272.
Pub Date: 2/07/97