Ansel Adams: Early Works

Date & Time: Friday, May 5 - Friday, June 30 2017 - Tuesday through Saturday: 9:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Sunday 1:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Location: 406 Federal Street - The Biggs Museum of American Ar - Dover, Delaware 19901

The Biggs Museum is proud to present its first exhibition of the works of the iconic American photographer, Ansel Adams.

Adams – photographer, musician, naturalist, explorer, critic and teacher – was a giant in the field of landscape photography. His work can be viewed as the end of an arc of American art concerned with capturing the “sublime” in the unspoiled Western landscape. This tradition includes several painters on view within the Biggs Museum including Albert Bierstadt and Thomas Cole. Most museum goers are only familiar with the heroic, high- gloss, high-contrast prints that Adams manufactured to order in the 1970s-80s, coinciding with the emergence of the first retail galleries devoted to photography. Much less familiar are the intimate prints, rich in the middle tones, that Adams crafted earlier in his career. The present show focuses on the masterful, small-scale, and remarkably rare prints made by Adams from the 1920s into the 1950s. Already in this time period there is quite an evolution of printing style, from the soft-focus, warm-toned, painterly “Parmelian prints” of the 1920s; through the f/64 school of sharp-focused photography that he co-founded with Edward Weston and Imogen Cunningham in the 1930s; and, after the War, towards a cooler, higher-contrast printmaking approach. In total 41 early works will be on view within the museum, a dazzling collection of Adams best known images and rarely exhibited prints.


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