Texas…not so ugly.

Texas nature photographer Charles Kruvand has been named recipient of the 2010 Arts in Service to the Environment Award by the Lone Star Chapter of the Sierra Club.

The award will be presented as part of the annual Sierra Club Lone Star Chapter Awards Dinner at Chez Zee American Bistro in Austin on Saturday, April 9 at 6:30 PM. The Lone Star Chapter of the Sierra Club annually recognizes Sierra Club members and others who have done outstanding work in pursuit of environmental protection or in furthering the goals and activities of the Sierra Club, the nation’s longest active – since 1892, and largest environmental organization.

The Arts in Service to the Environment Award is conferred only when merited to an individual or group for an outstanding work of art in any medium or discipline in service to the environment.

Charles Kruvand is an Austin-based photographer whose work has been featured throughout Texas, including at the Dallas Museum of Natural History, the Panhandle-Plains Historical Museum, the Wichita Falls Museum of Art, the Heard Natural Science, Museum, the Harry Ransom Center at the University of Texas at Austin, and the International Museum of Art and Science in McAllen. His photographs are also in the corporate collections of Kodak, Texas Instruments, Frito-Lay, and Citigroup.

Most recently his artistic and awe-inspiring color photography of Texas water features has been the visual focus of the recently published book The Living Waters of Texas.  The book is a compilation of personal essays by Texas environmental advocates accompanied by Charles’ stunning photos.

The book’s Editor and Director of the Lone Star Chapter of the Sierra Club, Ken Kramer said:

Texas book reviewer Glenn Dromgoole described the book simply as “gorgeous.”  That it is, but it is more than that. The 100 photos by Charles in the Living Waters book dramatically portray the diversity, spiritual value, and beauty of Texas rivers, creeks, springs, bays, marshes, bayous, and other water resources. They enhance the voices of the Texas conservationists who wrote about their inspirations and experiences by giving their words an evocative, emotional, and artistic context.  No one who spends time perusing the photos in the book will be untouched.

The photography featured in The Living Waters of Texas was a labor of love for Charles, who spent literally two decades compiling the portfolio from which the water photos in the book were drawn. His recounting of those experiences at the Texas Book Festival last October was captivating and motivating.

Andy Sansom, former executive director of Texas Parks and Wildlife Department and now executive director of the River Systems Institute (which sponsored the book), recognized the exceptional nature of Charles’ water photography and launched the effort to produce a book to highlight that photography and use it to help inspire new advocates for the protection of the state’s natural heritage.

No photographer in 2010 made a more important contribution to the appreciation for the Texas environment than Charles Kruvand.

In addition to Kruvand’s award, this year’s Lone Star Chapter Sierra Club Awards Dinner will honor Sierrans and others whose actions on parks and wildlife, water issues and environmental justice, as well as chapter service, merit both recognition and appreciation from the environmental community and all Texans.

Cost to attend the April 9 dinner in Austin is $40 per person, and proceeds will benefit the Lone Star Chapter’s legislative program. Dinner includes entrée and dessert with a vegetarian entrée available. A cash bar starts at 6:30 p.m. Dinner will begin at 7 p.m. and will conclude with the presentation of the awards. Dress is business casual.

The deadline for reservations is tomorrow, Friday, April 8. Space is limited, so early reservations are encouraged. Tickets are available at www.texas.sierraclub.org or by calling (512) 477-1729.

Chez Zee American Bistro is located at 5406 Balcones Drive in Austin.

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