Press Release

Wednesday, June 6, 2012 - 5:03pm
OMCA Photography Series Launches with Exhibition Showcasing Intimate Views of Living and Working in California’s Central Valley

Press Release (PDF) | Hi-Res Image for Download

This July, the Oakland Museum of
California will open Ken and Melanie Light: Valley of Shadows and Dreams, an exhibition
of photographs and written word exploring the harsh truths of the daily
experiences of farm workers and their families in California's Central Valley. On view in OMCA's Gallery of
California Art, July 28 through December
30, 2012
, the exhibition is the first of a three-part series exploring contemporary
topics in California through photography.

31 black-and-white photographs-on view for the first time in a museum-the
exhibition explores major threads in California history and the global issues
of our generation: water, land use, immigration and farm labor and growing
economic disparity. A photographic exploration of a region known for its
agricultural plenty and the marginalization of its people-Ken
and Melanie Light: Valley of Shadows and
delves deep into the reality of farm workers' daily
experiences and investigates the legacies of politics, bureaucracy, and control
in the region. In the tradition of great partnerships such as the iconic photographer
Dorothea Lange and agricultural economist Paul Taylor, the Lights reveal both the
beauty and the callous truths of this important agricultural region in
California through photographs and writing.