An exhibition showcasing the contribution of artist and photographer Owen Sanders to the Clarence Valley is being presented by the Grafton Regional Gallery until August 27. An extensive collection of his work will be presented in the exhibition, titled Owen Sanders – At Home and Abroad. It focuses on his life in the Clarence Valley during the Great Depression, life on the river, travelling shots during his time in the war and the aircraft he was so passionate about. Exhibition curator, Lorina Dufty, said she became involved in the exhibition while she was volunteering with the Grafton Regional Gallery and the Sir Earle Page Library and Education Centre. “A photograph of Owen’s had been presented to the Clarence Valley Council and the gallery was interested in tracking down the original,” she said. “The Sanders family brought in a box full of original photographs to the library and I realised that the mix of candid and staged shots took you on a fascinating journey through the history of Grafton, the history of photography, and the war. “I was especially interested in exhibiting his works because photography is in my blood; I take pictures all the time and Owen had been our neighbour when my father first moved our family to Grafton. “I was drawn to the underlying feeling of people seeking out joy in times of hardship.” Ms Dufty said the exhibition presented the time between when Owen began working with Grafton photographer Ken McLeod and developed his interest in photography to the time he spent overseas during WWII.