WALSENBURG- Photographer Paul Alhadef is this week’s featured artist from the ongoing Museum of Friends Courthouse show.
Alhadef says, "Originally from Los Angeles, I came to Huerfano County about three years ago looking for a change of pace. The sense of community that Huerfano County offers was a very appealing change from the hustle of the big city.
Being here has greatly enhanced my work. From the inspiration I get from the area and the people, to actually having the time to focus on my art, our area has allowed my work to grow in a very exciting way.
I think for me one of the biggest benefits of living here is just basic economics. Because the pace is slower it is less expensive to live. That means I can worry less about paying a big mortgage and focus on creating new work. And the area itself has attributes that let me take my work to the next level. There is an obvious natural beauty here, mountains, blue sky, etc, but for me the richness of the people has been a drive force in my photography.
I am a member of SPACe and the Art Center in Pueblo and I teach at the La Veta School of the Arts so I try to stay involved with the local area as much as I can.
My photography is a circus fun mirror held up to my environment. There is an audacity of size in large photographs that attracts me too. I also don’t like the myth that photography is a literal medium. I like to confront that idea and challenge how people perceive their world. I consider an image successful when it can interrogate the visual prejudices that we all have.
Some artists need the grit and energy of a big city. Some need the peace and slow pace that a small community can provide. If that latter is what you are looking for then Southern Colorado is your answer."
Be sure to stop by the courthouse to see the entire Museum of Friends exhibit. You can see more of Alhadef′s work at www.AlhadefPhoto.com, call him at 719 545 3822 or go byu his office located on the 4th floor of the Historic Federal Building In downtown Pueblo.