preparation for the second Reflections of the Land

"Window" (Diablo Trust archives)

In the three years since the first Reflections of the Land, the Diablo Trust had received many requests, from former and prospective artists and the general public, for another show. As in 1999, we brought artists (painters, sculptors, ceramicists, writers, poets, musicians, dancers, and all others interested) to the land for several days. Diablo Trust storytellers, historians, and scientists presented the historical, biological, and cultural dimensions of this beautiful and varied landscape. The artists were given the Diablo Trust landscape goals for the area so they might, through their chosen medium, interpret and chronicle the landscapes for the benefit of the community then, now, and into the future.

"Moqui" by Debbie Leavitt (Diablo Trust archives)

Following the "Artists' Days on the Land," the Diablo Trust exhibit and art show provided both a reception for the artists and a market for their work. The show also provided an important fund-raising opportunity for the Diablo Trust. Reflections of the Land programs help expose a new group of local citizens to education on such topics as current regional land issues, as well as allow them to see well-manages ranch lands and experience firsthand the many benefits these lands provide. Ultimately, the art exhibit exposes citizens and leaders alike to the ideas behind the Diablo Trust, as an innovative land management model which connects local 'grassroots' land users with agency land managers, researchers, environmentalists, and local, state, and federal political representatives in a collaborative group to work on common goals.

I love seeing artists with their easels spread out in the mountain valley; I love watching cowboys talk with dancers about ‘sense of place and community’ - it’s exciting. I think sincere collaboration is the hope of the future.
— Mandy Metzger, Coconino County Supervisor and former Diablo Trust manager and board president


"Eternity” by Jane Barnes (Diablo Trust archives)

The second Reflections of the Land, a celebration of open space and community, opened at the Northern Arizona University Art Museum on July 26, 2004 and ran through August 25. The exhibit included paintings, sculpture, stained glass, poetry readings, and music.

In preparation for Reflections of the Land-2004, artists were invited to several sites in the Diablo Trust land area to provide interpretations of the land through their work, culminating in a community presentation. With partial funding from Flagstaff Cultural Partners, Diablo Trust participants - representatives from federal, state and local land management agencies - provided artists with site specific historical and biological overviews.

Van Belle (Diablo Trust archives)

“Reflections of the Land; Diablo Trust Forum for the Arts, originated from a desire to bring an enhanced awareness of the treasure of our rural open spaces to the greater Flagstaff community,” said Mandy Roberts Metzger, Diablo Trust operations team member. Metzger said the Diablo Trust is constantly searching for innovative ways to meet “the challenge of keeping our rural landscapes open and our watersheds healthy. We don’t always know how to honor the products of collaboration. Reflections of the Land is an effort to both recognize and encourage grassroots solutions.”

Reflections of the Land-2004 offers a wide interpretation of the beauty of the natural landscape as seen through the eyes of artists working on-site. The collaboration of community art with the tradition of ranching and issues of land management and ecology is as unique and varied as the North Country itself. The Northern Arizona University Art Museum is delighted to be a partner in presenting the creative efforts resulting from this marriage of art and the land.
— Jack Gron, director of the School of Art at NAU