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Facing the Inferno: Idaho State Museum’s new wildfire exhibit

Kari Greer’s wildfire photography, along with excerpts from author and essayist Stephen J. Pyne, will be on display at the Idaho State Museum until August 7.

BOISE, Idaho —

Just as we enter this year’s fire season, there is a new exhibit at the Idaho State Museum on wildfires and their impact over the last couple decades, thanks to the camera work of photographer Kari Greer. 

We have all seen the effects of wildfires in the last several years. Fire season has gotten longer, starting earlier and ending later each year. 

For those who have not seen the major fires in Idaho firsthand, we certainly had to experience the smoke funneling into Idaho and our air quality has been bad for longer stretches of time during the summer.

Greer grew up in Coeur D’Alene and went to school to be a photographer, but she worked as a wildland firefighter in the summers. During those first few fire seasons, she would sneak some time to snap a few pictures, but soon she made the transition to full-time fire photography.  

She put together 64 of her favorite pictures for the museum's exhibit.

"If you've never been on a fire, you've never been right up close to a fire, don't you find yourself being a little curious?" Kari Greer said. "And so, I just have this drive to tell the story, just to show it. I think it's so visceral. I think it's so fundamental. It's a natural disaster that you can get close to and it's amazing to see it." 

Greer’s work and excerpts from author and essayist Stephen J. Pyne, who has written nearly a dozen books about wildfire, will be at the Idaho State Museum until August 7.

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