Rachel Cobb: Mistral
KMR Arts presents Rachel Cobb: Mistral, April 24 – June 8, 2019. Please join us for an opening reception and book signing with the artist Saturday, May 4, 2019, from 4-7pm.
Within the images of Mistral, Rachel Cobb has set up a seemingly impossible challenge for herself: to photograph the invisible. The Mistral is a legendary wind and weather phenomenon in Provence, France. It is a powerful, mysterious force that dominates the landscape as well as its animal and human inhabitants in every aspect of daily life. Cobb’s fascination with the Mistral and the region began as a teenager, when her family began to visit the area, “it was the pre-Peter Mayle days of Provence,” says the artist.
Examples of the influence of this invisible force are evident in the landscape and the habits of its inhabitants: spiders orient their webs to survive the wind, trees are planted as wind breaks around farmed fields, front doors are built on the more protected south side of homes in order to minimize excess banging, and prehistoric stone walls built as wind shields around firepits are still visible. The legendary and unpredictable wind has influenced writers and artists for centuries: from Emile Zola to Vincent Van Gogh’s Starry Night. A Châteauneuf-du-Pape winemaker says, “You can taste the wine better when the mistral blows.” Cobb’s photographs are evidence that the Mistral is an integral part of life in Provence.
Gallery owner McCarver Root says, “Rachel Cobb’s photographs of the Mistral remind us of the ever present forces of nature and how deeply they influence the earth. Cobb’s passion for creating this body of work is a force of nature in and of itself.”
Signed copies of Cobb’s book Mistral: the Legendary Wind of Provence, Damiani, 2018, will be available for purchase.