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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    Water photos show Near East

    Think the closest you can get to the Middle East is a plate of hummus, tabouli and pitas?

    Think again. At the newly-opened photography exhibit, “”Footsteps on Water,”” striking pictures of water of all types — from lakes to wells to cooking water — gives the stuck-in-Tucson falafel-holics a close look at the beautiful and varied landscape of the Near East.

    Dozens of pictures from countries ranging from Afghanistan to Yemen are being featured in the exhibit, which is on display through the end of the school year. Community cisterns, children playing in overflowing rivers and boiling tea are just a few of the subjects of the 19th annual event.

    At Thursday’s opening reception, students, professors and the public milled through the L-shaped lobby of the center. On an ordinary day, the area is home to a receptionist and hosts only office hours. For the opening of the art event, the smell of garlic and the sounds of many languages permeated the small space on the fourth floor of the Louise F. Marshall building.

    “”Footsteps on Water”” is meant to be a collection of images that convey the vital importance of water in the Middle East. The exhibit guide to the photos explains, “”As a natural resource, it is scarce; in culture and rituals, it is fundamental; and in politics, it can be divisive.””

    A few particularly memorable images include a colorful photograph of a harbor in Alexandria, Egypt, an elderly water carrier in Iran and a view of vibrant water pipes in the United Arab Emirates. The general concept of exhibition is a playful and peaceful approach to the natural resource that can be so scarce in the mostly-desertic Middle East.

    Several of the photographs are reminiscent of our own desert-filled state. One image depicts a waterfall in the Atlas Mountains of Morocco that recalls Arizona’s own Havasupai Falls, and a depiction of a sandstone gorge near Petra, Jordan, quite similar to those found around the Grand Canyon.

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