Trail as Muse typography
Ted Mathys
Ted Mathys headshot
The poem “Appalachian Trail” previously appeared in Null Set, Coffee House Press, 2015 – Photo by Virginia Harold
Appalachian Trail
I am in the
main on the

mend I am in
Maine on the

wagon on
Katahdin in

an animal
skin I am a


a stolen mirror
metaphor over

the peak to
make Maine

lakes glint in
sun I broke

like a main
clause over

the forest of the
page and paused

to drink from a
literal canteen

Katahdin via Instagram compilation / 2017
Katahdin via Instagram compilation / 2017
digital collage artist
William Van Beckum
William Van Beckum headshot
Photo by Samara Pearlstein
This work examines the visual culture of landscape imagery and tourism. By referencing and deconstructing the origins of the American landscape tradition, I create images from a perspective that is both critical and celebratory of the consumptive nature of humans photographic relationship to nature. While teaching photography in New Mexico, I noticed how many of my students simply wished to learn photography in order to capture Ansel Adams-esque images of beautiful scenery. In an age where the effects of climate change are beginning to become painfully evident, I wondered what drove people to overlook ecological trauma and focus purely on scenery. This image of Katahdin is made up of many images borrowed from hikers’ Instagram posts and digitally combined. The work references the picturesque qualities of historic landscape artwork, but also contains alterations and disruptions, which challenge the notion that the landscape should be interacted with on a purely visual level. This image asks viewers to analyze their relationship with nature and consider what they might do to protect the landscape beyond visual study and landscape tourism.