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Kansas Wesleyan University

Photographer, videographer, and inspirational speaker on diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI), Matthew Cicanese invites viewers to take a close look at his photographs and wonder at the symphony of scale and beauty of lichens.

His exhibit “Symphonies in Scale” will be on display from Sept. 25-Oct. 27 at The Gallery in Sams Hall of Fine Arts on the Kansas Wesleyan University campus.

Cicanese is an award-winning wildlife photographer and National Geographic Explorer who recently moved to Fort Collins, Colo., from the Tampa Bay area in Florida.

He specializes in macrophotography — larger than life — portraits of lichens, as well as moss, ferns, fungi, animals and plants.

A public reception for the exhibit opening will be from 5-7 p.m. Sept. 29.

Cicanese will offer DEI trainings on neurodiversity at 3:30 p.m. Sept 27 and noon Sept 28 in Peters Science Hall 201. The trainings are open to the public.

As a result of having meningitis as a baby, Cicanese, is blind in his left eye and deaf in his right ear, and he is neurodiverse.

While on campus, Cicanese also will share his experiences with photography classes and students.

Cicanese’s photography has been featured by Canon, National Geographic, World Wildlife Fund, Smithsonian Magazine and BBC Earth. In 2021, he was named a Forbes 30 Under 30 for Art and Style.

“Lichens have been a source of creative shelter for me, nurturing imaginative visions of their invisible yet collaborative communities,” Cicanese said. “Photographing their textures has sparked visions that rekindled a childlike curiosity within me, revealing opportunities to find my artistic voice and creative vision.”

Admission to The Gallery is always free. The Gallery hours are 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. weekdays and weekends by appointment.