In the Gallery: Sarah Lilja

In the Gallery: Sarah Lilja

Through September 2021:

In August and September, the gallery at Stillwater Public Library will feature the exhibit Water, White Pines, and Wildflowers by photographer Sarah Lilja. The vibrant works are from Sarah’s recent three-week residency at Pine Needles, the historic James Taylor Dunn Cabin, on the banks of the St. Croix River. This competitive residency program, sponsored by the St. Croix Watershed Research Station, focuses on the complex connection between art, the natural world, and the sciences. Sarah’s work captures new spring growth as it unfurled from the cold leaf-littered ground after a long Minnesota winter. She also spent time exploring the quality of light across the land at Pine Needles. Shooting from dawn to dusk, she was able to take photographs of the same subject multiple times over many days. She studied how different qualities of light and composition dramatically changed the way the subject looked across changing conditions. Two images in this exhibition, Wild Ginger Bud and Nodding Trillium, show how Sarah used the angle of sunlight, at different times of the day, to bring out details and create drama in the photographs.

Sarah hopes that the photographs on exhibit will inspire your wonder and curiosity about the important science work of the St. Croix Watershed Research Station and the special beauty of the St. Croix River Valley. She encourages everyone to get outside and explore for themselves how science and art come together in the natural world that surrounds us in the St. Croix Valley.

The exhibit runs from August 2 – September 30 and is viewable during library hours. Meet the artist at a reception in the gallery on Tuesday, September 14 from 5:30 – 7:30 PM. 

View our artist brochure to learn more about Sarah and her work. Want to dig deeper? Check out the Science Museum of Minnesota’s video interview with Sarah Lilja about her experience at Pine Needles.