Land of the Desert Sun: Texas' Big Bend Country

Land of the Desert Sun: Texas' Big Bend Country

by D. Gentry Steele, D. Gentry Steele
     
 

The Big Bend region, outlined by the snakelike curve of the Rio Grande, is a land of deserts and mountains. The lowlands of the region, dominated by the desert sun, are the eastern margin of the Chihuahuan Desert, one of the most arid regions of the world. Rising above the desert floor are numerous mountain ranges, part of the Southern Sierras. These mountain

Overview


The Big Bend region, outlined by the snakelike curve of the Rio Grande, is a land of deserts and mountains. The lowlands of the region, dominated by the desert sun, are the eastern margin of the Chihuahuan Desert, one of the most arid regions of the world. Rising above the desert floor are numerous mountain ranges, part of the Southern Sierras. These mountain islands of cooler and moister terrain above the sere desert give the Big Bend an incredible wealth of diverse biological communities. Together, the deserts and the mountains of the Big Bend are the largest and last wild area remaining in Texas. In Land of the Desert Sun, D. Gentry Steele explores this fascinating region with his camera, leading the reader to enjoy the Big Bend through the eyes of a naturalist and historian. Taken in black and white to emphasize light, shadow, and texture, Steele's photographs present the Big Bend in a way that appeals to the sense of awe at the grandeur of the region's geological scale and at the detail of life that hangs on determinedly in that harsh place. In addition to his fifty photographs, taken over a course of four years, Steele shares firsthand experiences and provides an brief natural and cultural history of the Chihuahuan Desert and the Big Bend National Park, placing the photographs in context. His descriptions provide an intellectual experience of the Big Bend country, as the photographs provide an emotional experience of the land. Big Bend enthusiasts and photography buffs alike will find that Steele's breath-taking portrait provides a richer understanding of this unique region.

Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
This photographic essay portrays the wilderness, history, and culture of Big Bend National Park, bordering the Rio Grande. Steele (anthropology, Texas A&M Univ.) captures the region's deserts, mountains, and wildlife in 50 black-and-white photographs taken over a four-year period. The use of a large-format camera has resulted in images that are deliberate and rich in textural detail. While many of the photographs use the contrast of light and shadow to portray somewhat abstract images, others reveal softer, more realistic representations with gradients of grays. The accompanying text adds to the reader's understanding of the area and gives testimony to Steele's attachment to the Big Bend natural landscape. Recommended for natural history, southwestern U.S., and photography collections.--Pamela W. Bellows, Northwestern Connecticut Community Coll. Lib., Winstead

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780890968352
Publisher:
Texas A&M University Press
Publication date:
02/28/1999
Series:
Louise Lindsey Merrick Natural Environment Series, #28
Pages:
132
Product dimensions:
8.40(w) x 9.90(h) x 0.60(d)

Meet the Author


D. Gentry Steele is a professor emeritus of anthropology at Texas A&M University. He is the co-author of The Anatomy and Biology of the Human Skeleton, also published by Texas A&M University Press.

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