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Lyonia Gallery
The Southeast Museum of Photography has expanded with a new exhibition space at the
Lyonia Environmental Center in Deltona, Florida.

October 23, 2012 - March 17, 2013


"In the beginning was nature." - Camille Paglia, Sexual Personae

Eric Breitenbach
Eric Breitenbach

The exhibition Apprehending Nature/Nature Apprehending is comprised of two bodies of work by Florida photographer Eric Breitenbach, both dealing with aspects of the natural environment.

Apprehending Nature stems from careful examinations and playful photographic experiments with common plant life, most of which were found in the photographer’s own backyard. These stunning, abstracted compositions have enabled Breitenbach to free himself from the expectations and traditions of the documentary style for which he is known while simultaneously allowing him to reveal the beautiful detail and whimsy of the botanical world that surrounds us all.

Nature Apprehending approaches common plant life in Florida from a different perspective. What began as a document of abandoned real-estate in Florida stemming from the recent recession, has spawned into a reflection of the adaptability and resilience of nature. Breitenbach has pensively recorded the tension between the natural and man-made, reflecting upon themes of both strength and fragility in this series that exemplifies nature’s perseverance, as plants and foliage slowly but surely repopulate concrete parking lots and abandoned properties.


Apprehending Nature

“During a long stay at home, I began to notice the intricacies of our yard's common plants, flowers, and grasses. I began to experiment with photographing them, letting go of my usual expectations, as a documentary photographer, of sharpness and clarity. At times I would simply thrust the camera into the foliage, judging later whether or not that method had yielded any success or surprises."

Nature Apprehending
  Eric Breitenbach

“In 2009, like many photographers, I set out to document the effects of the global financial collapse and the subsequent American recession. Signs of the calamity were everywhere, but most noticeably in the empty, abandoned storefronts and properties of local businesses.”

“Because the properties were uninhabited and unattended, nature quickly took its course. Initially dug up, cut down or even covered in concrete, the regenerating plants and foliage seen in the photographs are evidence of nature's unrelenting power. Regardless of man's intentions, it just keeps coming--a leaf, stalk, or blade at a time.”
Eric Breitenbach


Eric Breitenbach has been a still photographer for over thirty years and a filmmaker for more than fifteen. In 1988 and 1989, Breitenbach visited and photographed in all of Florida’s sixty-seven counties. This resulting body of work, titled The Florida Documentary Project, was comprised of 108 photographs displayed in ten museums and galleries throughout the state. Since then, his still photographs have appeared in such publications as The New York Times Magazine, Newsweek, Details, Doubletake, Information Week, Labor’s Heritage, Essence, and Orlando magazines. He has had over 20 solo exhibitions of his photographs throughout the US and is represented in the permanent collections of the Duke University Center For Documentary Studies, The Carpenter Center at Harvard University, The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, the Ogden Museum of Art, The Norton Gallery of Art, The Southeast Museum of Photography, and the corporate collections of Cincinnati Bell and Polaroid.

In addition to his artistic pursuits, Eric Breitenbach has been a full time Professor at the Southeast Center for Photographic Studies at Daytona State College since 1981. He has received institutional awards for both teaching excellence and professional development and research. Many of his students have gone on to become serious practitioners in the fields of still photography, film and video.

All images Untitled © Eric Breitenbach

The LYONIA GALLERY presents exhibitions and programs related to environmental, land-use, local history and regional culture in an exhibition space in Volusia County Government’s new LYONIA ENVIRONMENTAL CENTER.

The museum gallery occupies display space immediately adjacent to the environmental exhibits area of the Center. The LYONIA GALLERY will only be open to the public during the normal open hours and days of the Lyonia Environmental Center.
lyonia image
Deltona Map LOCATION
The Deltona Regional Library, Lyonia Environmental Center and Deltona Amphitheater are at 2150 Eustace Ave, Deltona, Florida.

The Southeast Museum of Photography’s LYONIA GALLERY will only be open to the public during the normal open hours of the Lyonia Environmental Center:

Monday - Thursday: 9:00 am - 5:30 pm
Friday and Saturday: 9:00 am - 5:00 pm
Sunday: 1:00 - 5:00 pm


For all information about the LYONIA ENVIRONMENTAL CENTER please call: (386) 789-7207 Main Office / (386) 257-6000 Daytona Beach / (386) 423-3300 New Smyrna Beach

Additional information is available by visiting the following websites:



The Southeast Museum of Photography is a service of Daytona State College
1200 W. International Speedway Blvd. (Building 1200) Daytona Beach, FL, 32114, (386) 506-4475
Free Admission & Parking

Click HERE for museum hours of operation

Exhibitions and programs at the Southeast Museum of Photography are supported in part by Daytona State College, Volusia ECHO and the State of Florida, Department of State, Division of Cultural Affairs and the Florida Council on the Arts.

Daytona State College prohibits discrimination and assures equal opportunity in employment and education services to all individuals without regard to age, ancestry, belief, color, disability, ethnicity, genetic information, gender, marital status, national origin, political affiliation, race, religion, sex, and veteran status. For more details, read our Equal Opportunity Statement or contact: Lonnie Thompson, Chair of the Equity Committee at 386-506-3403 or 1200 W. International Speedway Blvd., Daytona Beach, Fl. 32114.