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The Black Mountain Center for the Arts opens its Upper Gallery to a body of work by local photographer Herb Way in a show titled Vietnam: Some of Its People, which opens with an artist reception from 6-8 p.m. on Friday, July 27.

The reception is open to the public and the display runs through Aug. 31.

The show will be comprised of portraiture, which was the focus of Way’s professional career where he took photographs for corporate editorial and public relations purposes.

Upon retirement, Way moved to Black Mountain and used his new-found freedom to explore a more artistic vision. When an opportunity arose to travel to Vietnam, Way strapped on his camera and committed to capture the country’s people on film. The result was 4,300 photos, of which about 20 large format images will be on display. 

BMCA executive director Gale Jackson has been considering Way’s images for a gallery show since she met him several years ago. She appreciates Ways’ point of view and the range of his vision, as well as his ability to capture a thriving modern culture interspersed with the past.

“I think these photographs will be captivating to a generation who lived through the conflict in Vietnam,” says Jackson. “And I think they will also be interesting to all generations who can appreciate the cultural similarities and differences in a contemporary Vietnam.”

Way says his images capture active commerce at work, a tremendous amount of creativity and talent all interacting in a thriving metropolis.

“At its heart, this show reinforces how day to day living in any culture has its joys and its challenges. Herb Way helps us to see Vietnam in a way most tourists might overlook,” Jackson said.

The Black Mountain Center for the Arts is located at 225 W. State Street. The Upper Gallery is free to the public and open from 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. Monday - Friday. For more information call 669-0930 or visit BlackMountainArts.org.

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