Autistic nine year old among photographers showing at Sisson Museum

Paul Boerger
Nine year old Zeke Buchert, with dad John, is exhibiting his striking photographs at the Sisson Museum photography show. Zeke lives with autism, that he says allows to “see things from a different perspective.”

Through May 31, dozens of pictures taken by local photographers are on display at the Sisson Museum in Mount Shasta. Among the pictures are those taken by nine year old Zeke Buchert, who lives with autism.

His landscape photographs hold their own with the best of the exhibit and show a maturity of eye far beyond his age.

Zeke calls his exhibit “Autism Awareness” that says “autistic children often see things differently than others which sometimes gives a unique perspective to his photos.”

Zeke’s father John says “I have always been a shutterbug.”

“I taught him how to compose a shot and he takes these amazing pictures,” John says.

Zeke said he has been taking pictures since he was six years old, beginning when he was looking up a burned out tree trunk.

“I was staring up at a tree that was burned out,” Zeke said. “My grandma convinced me to use a camera. I just took a picture of it staring up.”

From sunsets to streams, Zeke shoots his pictures on a four megapixel Kodak compact camera, putting a different perspective on the assumed need for expensive equipment to get good pictures.

Zeke talks casually about his autism, saying that Autism Awareness is intended to “make people aware of it.”

“I’m different,” Zeke says.

John notes that Zeke’s favorite book is The Ultimate Visual Guide to Science.

Zeke confirms this as he rattles off information and statistics about the Milky Way, black holes and quasars. He says he wants to be an engineer when he grows up.

“I want to build a mile high skyscraper,” Zeke said.

Zeke is mainstreamed in regular school, attends Mount Shasta Gymnastics and is involved in?Stable Hands, a therapeutic program with horses.

The Sisson Museum is located at One North Old Stage Road in Mount Shasta. May hours of operation are daily from 1 to 4 p.m. For more information, call 530-926-5508 or visit the website at www.mountshastasissonmuseum.org.

Zeke Buchert’s first photograph, looking up a burnt out tree. “My grandma convinced me to use a camera,” Zeke said.