For Joseph Rossano, the fragility of glass is an apt metephor for the ecology of vanishing Northwest forests. His exhibition at the Museum of Northwest Art gains eloquence from being held in conjunction with an exhibition of paintings of historic and modern landscapes. Adjacent to the idealized scenes, Rossano sets the amputated trunk of a massive Douglas fir tree. The vulnerability of the felld giant is underscored by the bed of glittering glass shards on which it rests. Behinde it on the gallery wall, the Boulder River spills out in a series of four silver gelatin prints. The slow exposures pull the dark forest on the opposite bank into crisp relief and translate the whitewater into clouds that curl around boulders, rendering reality into the simulacrum of a dreamscape.
If nature is random, no hint of that is visible in Rossano¹s orderly presentations, with their formal spacing and arrangements. The careful, almost reverential placement of it¹s items including well-used saw blades and a weathered snow shoe imply enshrinement, and suggest their original importance in someone¹s life. Accorded the glassed-in status of museum pieces, they carry more than a hint of a classic vanitas theme: even machined objects and nature itself are subject to fleeting time. ~ Deloris Tarzan Ament, Artweek, April 2004, Vol. 35, Issue 3.