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ABOUT THIS EXHIBIT:

Opening in Fall 2024, this exhibit, "Through a Lens: An Ekphrastic Exploration Through the Works of L.M. Wood," is a stunning collection of ekphrastic poems that bring to life the poignant and powerful photographs of L.M. Wood. Shot on the Kiowa, Comanche, and Apache Reservation in Oklahoma Territory between 1899 and 1900, Wood's photographs capture the dignity and resilience of the Native American people, their land, and their way of life.

 

The poems, inspired by these photographs, are a testament to the enduring beauty and humanity of the people Woods documented. With each verse, the reader is transported to Indian Territory at the close of the 19th century, where they bear witness to the quiet strength of the Native American people as they go about their daily lives, their struggles, and their triumphs.

 

The poems are a moving tribute to the people and culture that Wood so sensitively captured, and a powerful reminder of the importance of preserving our shared cultural heritage.

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ABOUT THE POET:

A native of Cache, Oklahoma, Allen Stephenson (Comanche and Wichita Nations) is a descendant of the notable Comanche leaders Mow-way and Pa-Que-O-Haw-Pith (Yellowfish).

 

After graduating from Riverside Indian School in Anadarko, Oklahoma, he continued his education at Haskell Indian Nations University, graduating in 2018 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Indigenous and American Indian Studies.

 

He has most recently worked as the producer of Good Morning Indian Country; a weekly news program broadcasted through the William Allen White School of Journalism at the University of Kansas. His work has also been featured in KANSAS! magazine and on the radio program Talk with ME.


He has received numerous awards for his work including first and second place for Best Editorial in 2019 from the Native American Journalist Association as well as first, second, and third place for best TV Newscast in 2023.

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ABOUT THE PHOTOGRAPHER:

L.M. Wood, a mysterious figure in the history of photography, remains an enigma to this day. Between 1899 and 1900, Wood captured a series of photographs on the Kiowa, Comanche, and Apache Reservation in Indian Territory, now Oklahoma, which provide a rare glimpse into the daily lives of Native American tribes during a tumultuous period of cultural and geographical upheaval.

 

Despite their remarkable documentation, little is known about Wood's own life, motivations, or background. Their name does not appear in any notable photographic archives or histories, and their work was likely not widely recognized or celebrated during their lifetime.

 

The circumstances that led Wood to the reservation and the purpose of their visit remain a mystery, leaving behind only a haunting and poignant visual record of a vanished era.

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