The Utah map is endowed with a significant number of scriptural monikers, some of which will be familiar to readers of the Bible while others are unique to the Book of Mormon. These are at the heart of Daniel George’s project, God to Go West.
George is a professor of art at BYU who received his MFA from the Savannah College of Art and Design and his BFA from BYU-Idaho. For his project, he has photographed a score of locations in Utah that bear scriptural names given to them by early settlers from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Few of these black-and-white photographs are striking, the range of grays eschewing any sense of black so that shadows and highlights disappear or become negligible (George’s is definitely not Ansel Adams’ high-contrast vision of the West). Benefit of the doubt suggests this is not due to a lack of skill but to a purposeful strategy — a desire to emphasize the semantic rather than the aesthetic nature of George’s project.
Read the full story by Shawn Rossiter at artistsofutah.org.