The gentle shape of the land; the volume of the sky; the vast swathes of crop; the sheer bigness of it. It is the Prairie. What started out as a desire to map out connections between my ancestors and my childhood memories of south western Alberta turned into a realization that perhaps I would only be able see the prairie for the first time, every time.

Each time I headed out in my dad's car, it was as if I hadn't seen it the day before. Astonishment. Boredom. Heart pounding. Dirt. Bugs. Heat. Late night returns. It was as if I was in love. I wanted more each time. What resulted is a clear love letter to the land. It shifts and moves yet stays still, holding its own against the sky. It is about the elements of the earth here. A simple architecture of land and sky and colour.

It had always lived inside me. This land. Going back, as we are apt to do when we feel unsure of the future, made me realize I may be blind and cannot really see. There is much below the surface. For now, for this, I pen my love letter with these. It is what I can see now.

south
x
southwest



“Blame it or praise it, there is no denying the wild horse in us.”


V. Woolf

JOANNA C. JOHNSTON 2020