by Jim Provencher
Photography by Stephen Hummel
Jim Provencher is a poet and photographer who is a dedicated desert wanderer. As an American ex-pat living in Australia, he has come to spend his Down Under winters exploring the deserts of South Australia and the Red Centre. In his Antipodal summers, he has spent the last ten years foraging the American Southwest, the Borderlands, roving and ranging the Empty Quarter of little rain. Deserts imply negation, places one merely passes through, minimalistic tribulations. Yet they are so much more. Provencher, who grew up as a French-Canadian on a borderline, was culturally sundered from the start. Thus he has found a genuine home in these culturally and geographically constrained complex Fronterizo regions.
Stephen Hummel is a Dark Skies Specialist at the University of Texas' McDonald Observatory, tasked with helping to preserve the night sky in the Big Bend region through education and awareness, community advocacy, and monitoring of sky conditions in support of astronomical research. In addition, Stephen is an experienced photographer of all things in the night sky.