Gary Higgins, the soil and water conservation director of Buncombe county, working in
Hominy Creek, a tributary of the French Broad. Jeff Rich added portraits to his project to help
viewers connect to the river.
In addition to winning the Critical Mass book award and publishing his book, Rich has
exhibited his work at Jennifer Schwartz Gallery in Atlanta, and is having a show of the
work later this year at the Fernbank Museum of Natural History, also in Atlanta.
Rich also plans to continue his “Watershed” project with the Tennessee Watershed,
where the French Broad flows into the Tennessee River. As the third phase of the project he plans to follow the Tennessee River to the Ohio River, then the Mississippi River
and into the Gulf of Mexico, documenting the largest watershed in the United States.
“A big thing for me was knowing that this water ended up in the Mississippi rather
than the [nearby] Atlantic Ocean,” Rich says. “For the longest time before I started the
project I would just drive over the rivers and not know their names, and not know
where they went.” With Watershed: The French Broad River, Rich encourages us to pay
closer attention to the rivers around us and take part in their stewardship.
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