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SD beauty on display at Dakota Discovery Museum

'A Regular' poem by Bruce Roseland, photograph by Susan Melius

Heart of the Prairie, an exhibit featuring the collaborative work of two South Dakota artists, is currently available for viewing at the Dakota Discovery Museum.

As people hurry along the various highways that cross north central South Dakota, they may think of the landscape and the folks who live on the land as being plain, even uninteresting. Upon closer inspection, though, beauty and wonderment abound.

Bruce Roseland, a writer of free verse, and Susan Melius, a photographer, have combined their efforts to try to open a window onto their particular section of the Missouri Coteau in hopes of encouraging everyone to see this land the same way they do. Bruce and Susan are neighbors, living about 20 miles apart in this overlooked region of South Dakota. They have pooled their talents in writing and photography to create an art exhibit titled the Heart of the Prairie.

The exhibit is a showcase for and corollary to the book they have collaborated to create, "Church of the Holy Sunrise," a volume that combines Roseland's free verse with Melius' photo artistry to present a unique view of the land they have both grown up in and spent their entire lives on. Both artists wish to draw attention to an agricultural and cultural landscape that is rapidly changing.

They share the view that the people, the land and the nature itself exhibit a great beauty and fascination if you just stop and look around. Roseland and Melius feel as though they are writing about and photographing the same kind of land and the descendants of the same people, plus 130 years, that South Dakota artist Harvey Dunn based his paintings on.

Exhibit details

Heart of the Prairie on exhibit through July 15 Dakota Discovery Museum is located on the campus of Dakota Wesleyan University at 1300 McGovern Ave., Mitchell Regular museum hours: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., closed Sundays and Wednesdays

Copies of the book and prints available for purchase

Free, public reception for the artists will be at 5 p.m. Sunday