Learn the history of mining in the West at the Phoenix Art Museum's new exhibit

By Steve Goldstein
Published: Thursday, December 9, 2021 - 12:07pm
Updated: Thursday, December 9, 2021 - 6:03pm

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landscapes of extraction exhibit
Phoenix Art Museum
An installation view of "Landscapes of Extraction: The Art of Mining in the American West" at the Phoenix Art Museum in 2021.

Mining has played a significant role in the history of parts of the United States — and Arizona, in particular, when we consider the impact of copper mining here.

Whether it’s photographs of miners emerging from underground, covered with dirt, or drawings and paintings depicting more abstract images, mining has been frequently presented artistically.

A current exhibition at the Phoenix Art Museum fits into that tapestry. It’s called, "Landscapes of Extraction: The Art of Mining in the American West," and the curator is Betsy Fahlman.

The Show spoke with her and started the conversation by asking her why, with her background in the arts, she became interested in mining.

butte hill mining
Phoenix Art Museum
"Butte Hill as Seen from Butte City," by Paul Sample,1936. Oil on canvas. Montana Historical Society, Helena, Montana. Photo: Tom Ferris.

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