Published: July 11, 2022 By

Gesing capturing a photo in Utah

When Lars Gesing (MJour’15) moved to the U.S. from Germany in 2013, he became enamored with the American West. After spending several years traveling America as a reporter, Gesing turned to photography to spend more time exploring his new home country. His gallery, Lars Gesing Fine Art Nature Images, opened in Seattle in March 2022. His work has been shown worldwide, including in San Francisco, Vienna and Athens. 

What are some highlights from your journalism career? Gesing in an art gallery next to one of his works

For a few years, I worked as a TV news producer in Washington, D.C., for the German public broadcaster ARD. I covered the big political stories of our time, including the consequential 2016 election and its aftermath. My favorite piece I worked on during that time was a feature documentary about how climate change already impacts the coastal communities of Alaska’s native peoples. 

What inspired you to switch from reporting to photography? 

Once I moved to Boulder from Germany, my camera quickly became my vehicle to translate the wild and foreign lands of the West into something I could understand — a photograph. But it was during a two-week trip to Alaska while we produced our documentary that I realized the real voice I wanted to listen to was that of the land itself. 

Coming from Germany, what aspects of the American West keep you here? 

The American West for centuries has been a land of hopes and dreams for fortune-seeking people from across the world — myself included. It’s a timeless land of intense beauty and mystery that has maintained this aura that it’s a place where hard work and a healthy dose of risk just may be rewarded with the life of your dreams. 

Three buffaloes captured by GesingWhich of your photographs is your favorite?

A few years ago, I was photographing the bison herd in the Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge during the first snow of fall. As the snowfall thickened, something moving happened: Individual small units of bison moved closer together to shield each other from the raging storm — like a family does in hard times. The resulting image, “Family Bonds,” is my favorite for that reason: It is a show of the strength of family, even if those bonds are stretched across oceans and continents, like they are in my case. And of course, as a lifelong Buff, there really was only one answer to this question!

What do you hope people glean from your art? 

I have dedicated my creative life to searching the grand natural beauty of the American West, this land of opportunity and perpetual hopefulness, for moments that encapsulate what it means to feel truly at home: moments of comfort and awe, of raw beauty and genuine happiness, of silent reflection and cherished togetherness. 

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Photos courtesy Lars Gesing