Our 2016 Contact Photo Festival feature is photographer Monica Glitz.
Monica will be showcasing her works from her Ancient Splendor series that documents UNESCO World Heritage sites. Each print featured in the show will be made using alternative printmaking processes.
Below is one of the locations featured in the show, The Okavango Delta
April 22 – May 31 | Opening April 28
The Okavango Delta, one of the most incredible wilderness sanctuaries in Africa, is an area 15 000 square kilometres of permanent and seasonal rivers and water channels, lagoons, swamps grasslands, woodlands and islands. Each year, floodwaters flow down the Okavango River from the central African highlands over 1000 km away into the fan-shaped Delta, to create this wondrous wetland within the arid Kalahari. It is the largest intact inland delta in the world, one of the very few major delta systems that does not flow into a sea or ocean. One of natures masterpieces, this vast and virtually untouched freshwater wetlands is in the heart of a desert yet supports a rich abundance of wildlife, and is a setting of dazzling natural beauty.
It is one of Africa’s last remaining great wildlife habitats and supports and provides refuge to huge concentrations of game. The Delta’s habitats are species rich with 1000+ plants, 89 fish, 64 reptiles, 482 species of birds and 130 species of mammals. Included are some of the world’s most endangered species of large mammals, such as cheetah, white and black rhinoceros, African wild dog and lion, and at least 24 globally threatened bird species. Botswana also supports the world’s largest population of elephants, numbering around 130,000, making the Okavango Delta the core area for this species’ survival.
The Okavango Delta became the 1000th site to be officially inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List in 2014. A quintessential Okavango experience is the opportunity to watch wildlife at eye level while gliding silently in a mokoro (dugout canoe).
Mokoro excursions offer an authentic and unobtrusive insight into this incredible fresh water oasis and wetland paradise. Moving from wetland to dryland – traversing the meandering palm and papyrus fringed waterways, passing palm-fringed islands, and thick woodland, resplendent with lush vegetation, and rich in wildlife – reveals many facets of this unique ecosystem.
The amazing array of flora and fauna and the supreme tranquility and serenity of an untouched delta with its scenes of extraordinary natural beauty create an astoundingly emotional experience.
Monica Glitz grew up on a farm in Ontario, Canada. Artistic from an early age, she went on to seriously study art through high school and in university. Monica holds a degree in Fine Art / Art History from York University, graduating on the Dean’s list as well as receiving the Atkinson College Students’ Association Award for academic excellence.
Her venture into fine art photography started while travelling for pleasure. Through Monica’s great passion for exploration she discovered that exotic travel destinations were also the home of many exciting photographic subjects. Although she is self-taught in workings of the camera, Monica’s visual and artistic sensibility at perceiving the world around her is reinforced by training in artistic fundamentals such as line, form, colour theory, and composition.
Monica’s photographic works focus on dramatic subjects, evocative compositions, fascinating details, and atmospheric settings that inspire an appreciation of the beauty that surrounds us. She attempts to capture the essence of the moment of standing in awe of the view, whether it is an inspiring landscape in Scotland, sunlight on a cathedral tower, wildlife in remote Africa, remnants of ancient times or walking along a mist shrouded path in the mountains of China.
Her fascination with ruins of ancient civilizations was strongly developed during her University years. She is naturally drawn to anything historical, but particularly the crumbling ruins of the past where one’s romantic imagination can take flight. Whether they are the remnants of Canada’s short historical past or the ancient temples of a civilization that thrived 1,000 years ago, Monica’s images tell a story.
Travelling the world continues to be a passion. Her travels over the past 20 years have inspired Monica to photograph more than 100 UNESCO World Heritage sites – some of the most photogenic places that one could ever wish to visit.
Monica Glitz has always taken the road less travelled to experience the wonders that the world has to offer. Her travels over the past 20 years have inspired Monica to photograph locations with natural beauty and historical significance throughout Europe, North & South America, Australia, Asia, and Africa. Her images capture the essence of standing in awe of the view, whether of ruins from ancient times or a mist shrouded path in the mountains.
In this series of photographs, Monica has captured stunning images of distinct historically important and environmentally sensitive UNESCO World Heritage sites. Her images capture the feeling of looking back in time, and often the smallest details tell the best stories.
These images are presented in two alternative printing formats with historical roots in the 1800’s: platinum palladium and tri-color pigment gum over palladium. These special printing techniques produce distinct works of art that possess a beauty, depth, and permanence that will endure generations and give justice to the enduring qualities of the subjects captured in the images.
Monica’s passion in photography is to share the beauty she sees from an emotional perspective, and to challenge the mind and imagination to ask questions about the past … who? why? how?