Joel Sartore (born 1962)

Between September 16, 2017 and February 25, 2018, HMA's exhibition ENDANGERED: Joel Sartore Retrospective will showcase Sartore's environmental passion with an installation of fifty-five gorgeous examples of his animal photography. This artwork illustrates both the beauty and the tragedy of animal species threatened by extinction.

Life-long Nebraskan Joel Sartore is an award-winning photographer, speaker, author, teacher, and a many-year contributor to National Geographic magazine. His interest in nature started in childhood, when he learned about the very last passenger pigeon from one of his mother's Time-Life picture books. Sartore grew up in Ralston, Nebraska and graduated from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln with a degree in journalism. His first National Geographic assignments introduced him to nature photography, and also allowed him to see human impact on the environment first-hand. He has since been chased by a wide variety of species including wolves, grizzlies, musk oxen, lions, elephants and polar bears while pursuing the most telling images.

The images on left are all in the HMA exhibit, and all are ©Joel Sartore. Pictured are a polar bear with a partially eaten bowhead whale carcass in the Canadian Arctic, monarch butterflies clustering at a Mexican overwintering site, Bull Trout in Bighorn Creek in the Wigwam River drainage in British Columbia, Canada, and a king penguin rookery on South Georgia Island's St. Andrews Bay, below the southern tip of Argentina.

Between assignments, Sartore retreats to the Lincoln, Nebraska home he shares with his wife Kathy and their three children. His being gone sometimes for months at a time on assignment can be a challenge for family life; but fortunately, mutual affection and respect is reinforced by the family's shared sense of humor.

For more about Sartore personally see the enjoyable PBS essay "At Close Range with National Geographic: Who is Joel Sartore?" here. It describes the multiple aspects of the photographer: his background, his approach to photography, as an environmentalist, the family man.

Sartore is the founder of the Photo Ark, a continuing documentary project started in 1995 to save species and habitat, and the images below are all part of that project as well as in the HMA exhibit. All are ©Joel Sartore. Left to right are Fennec Foxes, a Kaiser Spotted Newt, an Okapi, and a White-Bellied Pangolin adult with offspring. Sartore provides a link to the project on his website, and talks a bit about himself too.

More details about the upcoming HMA exhibit here, including related programming and more of Sartore's photographs.


Post by Karin Borei, HMA Project Coordinator, writer and editor as needed, and HMA blogger since March 2015.