African Journeys: Photographs on View at Cathryn’s

"What's Up, Gorilla?" photograph by Clemson Smith Muñiz

“What’s Up, Gorilla?” photograph by Clemson Smith Muñiz

An exhibit of photographs by Garrison’s Clemson Smith Muñiz will be on display at Cathryn’s Tuscan Grill, 91 Main St., Cold Spring, now through June 15. Muñiz describes his multiple journeys to Africa:

“When I started exploring Africa in 1997 and moved to Garrison in 1999, I expanded my horizons and evolved in rewarding ways. I learned photography, discovered the Hudson Valley and embraced a thriving art community. While I’m Puerto Rican by birth and a sports broadcaster by profession, the voice of los Knicks y los Jets en español, I’m defined by many other passions: cycling and Team Highlands Xtreme, succulent foods and savory wines, and scholarships for Latino undergraduates at my alma mater, the University of Pennsylvania.

“I’m drawn to Africa because of its size and history, its diversity and cultures, and its wildlife and landscape. Life is so vibrant and fragile at the same time. I’ve heard the lion roar 50 yards from the tent in the middle of the night, rafted the Zambezi River below Victoria Falls, trekked for mountain gorillas, and hiked through the bush unarmed, protected only by the senses.

“I’ve taken six trips in all, including to Uganda and Rwanda last summer. Maybe I can sum it up with ‘My Hat.’ My inseparable companion, this hat has been with me to Botswana and South Africa five times. I confess that I bought it for its rakish look, but you do spend hours in open jeeps under the bright African sun. One day I was walking at dusk through acacia thorns in Phinda, KwaZulu-Natal, when it snagged on a branch. My first instinct was to reach for it, but fortunately I stopped, captivated by the soft glow of the golden light reflecting off the brim. Photography is about capturing the moment. And Africa is about finding your soul.”

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