TRENTON, NJ -The New Jersey State Museum is pleased to announce “Preserving the Pinelands: Albert Horner’s Portraits of a National Treasure,” a new exhibition opening Saturday, October 12. The exhibition features images by photographer Albert Horner which capture the quiet beauty and intimate landscapes of New Jersey’s Pinelands National Reserve. A number of artifacts and scientific specimens from the Museum’s collections help tell some of the stories of the land, animals, people and industries that make this unique area a state and national treasure. “Preserving the Pinelands” will be on view through June 28, 2020 in the East Gallery on the Museum’s on the first floor.
The photographs capture Horner’s reverence for this extraordinary region – one of North America’s largest and healthiest surviving aquifers, a habitat for rare wildlife and flora, a place with a fascinating history and folklore, as well as his dedication to using his work to educate and to inspire others to protect this fragile ecosystem. Through Horner’s lens, visitors can wander through the region’s forests and discover the surprising variety of scenery, habitats and species in this island of biodiversity within the most crowded part of North America.
This year marks the 40th anniversary of the Pinelands Protection Act, considered by former Governor Brendan T. Byrne to be the most important accomplishment of his administration, and the issue most central to his legacy as governor. In addition to being home to rare plant and animal species, the Reserve also contains archeological sites and a vibrant cultural history of craftspeople, industry and agriculture.
“The 40th anniversary of the Pinelands Protection Act is a wonderful opportunity for the Museum to highlight for the public the beauty, diversity and history of this unique region of the state.” said Margaret O’Reilly, New Jersey State Museum Executive Director. “Albert Horner’s reverence for the Pinelands may be seen in every photograph. And the images invite us in, to explore this spectacular region and to contemplate how intertwined our lives are with the land.”
To help visitors delve into the archaeology of the Pinelands and discover its prehistoric and colonial history, on October 19 the Museum will host two guest speakers for International Archaeology Day. Dr. Patricia Hansell, Temple University, will discuss “Reassessment of the Prehistoric Settlements in the Pinelands” at 11:00 am. She will be followed by Dr. Richard Viet talking about “The Archaeology of the Pinelands Heritage at the Cedar Bridge Tavern” at 11:40 am. These talks are free and will be presented in the “Much Moved People” gallery on the Museum’s lower level.
On Saturday, June 27, the weekend the exhibition closes, the Museum will host a Pinelands-themed all-ages event from 4:00 to 8:00 pm that will include live traditional Pinelands music, hands-on activities, and more. Information will be available on the Museum’s website.
Mr. Horner’s book, Pinelands: New Jersey’s Suburban Wilderness will be available for purchase in the Museum Shop. The Shop is operated by the New Jersey State Museum Foundation, and proceeds help support the State Museum’s collections, exhibitions and programs.
The New Jersey State Museum is open 9:00 am to 4:45 pm, Tuesday through Sunday; closed on Mondays and State holidays. The Auditorium Galleries are open Tuesday through Friday, 9:00 am to 4:30 pm; closed on weekends, Mondays and State holidays. General admission is free; donations to the NJ State Museum Foundation, a non-government 501(c)3 organization which supports the Museum, gratefully accepted. For additional information, visit www.statemuseum.nj.gov, like the Museum’s Facebook page (@NJStateMuseum), follow us on Twitter (njstatemuseum), or Instagram (nj_statemuseum).
About the New Jersey State Museum
Located at 205 West State Street in Trenton, the New Jersey State Museum encompasses three buildings including a state-of-the-art Planetarium, and holds over 2 million artifacts in its collections in Archaeology/Ethnography, Cultural History, Fine Art and Natural History. As a center of cultural, educational and scientific engagement, the Museum inspires innovation and lifelong learning through collections, exhibitions, programs and research in science, history and art. Established in 1895, the New Jersey State Museum fosters state pride, serves as a cultivator of tomorrow’s leaders, and engages visitors of all ages and diverse backgrounds in an exploration of New Jersey’s cultural and natural history presented within a global context.
About Albert Horner
Medford Lakes resident Albert Horner has known the scenic wonders of the New Jersey Pinelands National Reserve for most of his life. A self-taught photographer who began documenting the Pinelands in his early 30s, Horner has the advantage of living in the area and getting to know it very well. He has captured the unique landscape in all seasons, weather and light, recorded the flora and fauna found there, and depicted the wild, yet tranquil beauty of the Reserve. “Although the Pinelands does not have mountain peaks, or lush valleys with babbling streams, it does have a beauty and uniqueness all its own,” says Horner. Those qualities are what Horner seeks to find in his camera’s lens. A Pinelands Preservation Alliance board member, Albert Horner uses his art to advocate on behalf of the importance of the ecology of the region.
About the New Jersey State Museum Foundation
The New Jersey State Museum Foundation was founded in 1968 as a non-profit 501(c)(3) to support the Museum's collections, exhibitions and programs through fundraising, volunteerism, advocacy and marketing. In recent years, the Foundation has received generous support from the PNC Foundation, NJM Insurance Group, NJ Department of State/New Jersey Historical Commission, Henry Luce Foundation, Capstone Foundation and Princeton Area Community Foundation. The Foundation also operates a recently renovated gift shop selling merchandise related to the Museum's exhibitions, collections and New Jersey history and culture. Proceeds support the New Jersey State Museum’s collections, exhibitions and programs.