Art exhibit opens at Railroad Museum Friday

Railroads of the steam era provide the theme for a new art exhibit at the Nevada State Railroad Museum, the work of California photographer Gordon Osmundson.

Too young to remember the era, he traveled to places like East Ely in Nevada and Jamestown in California to create this black-and-white collection, on display at the museum from May 25 to Sept. 29.

Highly detailed, close-up views of steam locomotive apparatus and still-life photography of railroad shop machines and tools make up the principal exhibition themes, but the Carson City exhibit also includes scenes and action shots.

"This machinery has a different feel from what we are used to today," Osmundson said. "It is simple, direct and honest. Best of all, most of the working parts are right out where you can see and appreciate them.

"These photographs communicate the tactile qualities of the machinery," he said. "The grease and polished parts glisten. Every piece has substance."

A native of Oakland, Calif., Osmundson took his first railroad photo in 1963 and started his large-format (high resolution) camera work in 1973.

He has a bachelor's degree in business administration and a master's degree in landscape architecture, both from the University of California, Berkeley. He lives in Oakland and works as a licensed landscape architect in San Francisco.

Other acclaimed components of Osmundon's portfolio include grain elevators in California's Sacramento Valley, automobiles of mid-century and earlier vintage and piston-driven aircraft.

His photos are in several prestigious collections, including the Oakland Museum, the Kaiser Foundation in California and the Brookings Institution in Washington, D.C.


What: "Tribute to Another Era: The Railroad Photography of Gordon Osmundson"

When: 7:30 p.m. Saturday

Where: Nevada State Railroad Museum, 2180 S. Carson St.


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