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Ossabaw: Evocations of an Island by Jack Leigh, James Kilgo, and Alan Campbell

Price: $30.00 hard bound book
In Stock

A tribute in word and image to a Georgia sea island

A wild paradise of woodlands, beaches, and tidal marshes off the Georgia coast, Ossabaw Island is a heritage preserve that will forever remain undeveloped. Visitors rarely leave untouched by its tranquillity and mystery. Many are struck by the sense of solitude it imparts—even though Ossabaw lies just twenty miles south of Savannah.

The book’s three creators have powerful connections to Ossabaw: Jack Leigh’s photography and James Kilgo’s nature writing have led them there, while Alan Campbell has taken part in the artists’ retreat known as the Ossabaw Island Project. This retreat has been a source of inspiration and rejuvenation for such attendees as the writer Annie Dillard, architect Robert Venturi, composer Samuel Barber, and sculptor Ann Truitt. Leigh’s black-and-white photographs, Campbell’s watercolor and oil paintings, and Kilgo’s essay offer three highly individual interpretations of a similar experience—that of deep personal connection with Ossabaw’s timelessness and beauty.

In "Place of the Black Drink Tree" Kilgo’s meditations on the yaupon holly tea used ritually by Ossabaw’s aboriginal inhabitants lead to other thoughts about the island’s natural and human history. Leigh and Campbell's images depict scenes of the contemporary Ossabaw that evoke a landscape as it may have appeared to its Native American, and even its earliest European, inhabitants: deserted beaches strewn with massive pieces of driftwood, palm trees tilting toward the water’s edge, an alligator lounging on the bank of a sandy creek, a flock of seabirds winging across a marsh.

Jack Leigh is the author of five highly acclaimed books of photography, including The Ogeechee (Georgia). Leigh lives in Savannah, Georgia. James Kilgo (1941-2002) wrote extensively about nature, the landscape, and our connections to them. Five of his books, including Colors of Africa, are available from the University of Georgia Press. Alan Campbell, who is based in Athens, Georgia, has served as a visiting artist on scientific expeditions with the National Science Foundation and the Organization for Tropical Studies. The authors' royalties from the sale of this book will go to the Ossabaw Island Foundation.

"This handsome book captures the magic of Ossabaw Island. Jack Leigh's startling photographs, the engaging paintings of Alan Campbell, and the spirited essay by James Kilgo bring to life the island's mysteries and untouched beauty."
—Donald Keyes, former curator of paintings at the Georgia Museum of Art

"At first, it seems a stretch, using three mediums to put together a portrait of Ossasbaw Island. No one disputes the talents of Jack Leigh, Alan Campbell and the late James Kilgo. But do their disciplines—photography, painting and prose—meld in this instance? The reply is a resounding yes, and the result is a remarkable book."
—Chuck Mobley, Savannah Morning News

"If you're drawn to coastal wildernesses and/or extraordinarily well-produced books, Ossabaw: Evocations of an Island is a book for you. A collection of interpretations of the uppermost (near Savannah) but least fabled of Georgia's golden isles by photographer Jack Leigh, writer James Kilgo, and painter Alan Campbell, the enticement is a treat for both the mind and eye." —Bob Summer, Publishers Weekly Southern Correspondent

"A compelling look at the first of Georgia's State Heritage Trust preserves." —Athens Magazine

"Ossabaw is an inspired effort by three devotees of this coastal heritage preserve." —Southern Living

"No one disputes the talents of Jack Leight, Awlan Campbell and the late James Kilgo. But do their disciplines—photography, painting and prose—meld in this instance? The reply is a resounding yes, and the result is a remarkable book." —Chuck Mobley, Savannah Morning News

"Kilgo, Leigh, and Campbell present island lovers with a place that grips the imagination and stirs the soul." —Bob Morris, Islands

"In Ossabaw, two graphic artists and an essayist groove together like a jazz trio, each elaborating on the same themes …Ossabaw is indeed an evocation, a work that invites the reader to wander around, to make discoveries in the way that each artist develops the motif and celebrates the sometimes harsh beauty of one of Georgia's barrier islands." —Augusta Magazine


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