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Thread: Ansel Adams Exhibit Art Gallery of Ontario

  1. #1

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    Ansel Adams Exhibit Art Gallery of Ontario

    The AGO in Toronto has an exhibit running from Nov 18, 2006 to Feb 4, 2007. There are about 120 images from the Lane Collection. This is the first time I have seen Adams actual prints other than in books. The iconic prints (Monolith, Clearing Winter Storm, Moonrise Hernandez, etc, etc) were spectacular to see. There were also many prints that I have never seen in any books that I would say were also spectacular. There were some, dare I say, average prints also. As a humble amature LFer, I found the show inspiring. If you get a chance it is well worth the price of admission.

  2. #2
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    Re: Ansel Adams Exhibit Art Gallery of Ontario

    I wrote a little blog post after seeing this exhibition at its first stop, at the Boston MFA. There was some wonderful stuff in it, but for me it served mostly to deflate the legend of Ansel-as-darkroom-virtuoso.

    Regardless, if you're within hailing distance of the AGO and you've seen Ansel's work only in books, it's well worth the trip. You'll make your own judgments about print quality, but to put the work of the historical giants of photography in perspective, there's no substitute for seeing actual prints.

  3. #3

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    Re: Ansel Adams Exhibit Art Gallery of Ontario

    You know it's funny, there was another Ansel Adams print on display in the Dstillery District in Toronto. I had the same impression as you did: that it was dark.... But so was the Studio that it was displayed in. I'm thinking that perhaps one issue may be that the Adams prints have to be well lit?

    Cheers

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    Re: Ansel Adams Exhibit Art Gallery of Ontario

    Quote Originally Posted by snuck View Post
    You know it's funny, there was another Ansel Adams print on display in the Dstillery District in Toronto. I had the same impression as you did: that it was dark.... But so was the Studio that it was displayed in. I'm thinking that perhaps one issue may be that the Adams prints have to be well lit?
    It's much more than that. Hie thee to the AGO and see for yourself...

  5. #5

    Re: Ansel Adams Exhibit Art Gallery of Ontario

    I finally was able to see his work up close at the Bellagio exhibit (don't laugh) in Las Vegas. Although the lighting tended to glare up a lot of the photos, I was able to really appreciate the quality of his work. I found it funny that my favorite photo was of his friends Williard Nash and Georgia O'Keeffe- a candid of friends with a 35mm camera, photography that he was not exactly known for.

    If you get a chance to see his work anywhere, I'd highly recommend it.

    Eric
    Dad, why is the lens cap on?

  6. #6

    Re: Ansel Adams Exhibit Art Gallery of Ontario

    eric, did you look in the view camera setup there? You can go under the focu cloth and look at the picture on the wall in front of the camera. Not many know to do this. Everyone is gallery nice and on their don't touch behavior. My wife and I both had a look.

    tr

  7. #7

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    Re: Ansel Adams Exhibit Art Gallery of Ontario

    Quote Originally Posted by snuck View Post
    I'm thinking that perhaps one issue may be that the Adams prints have to be well lit?

    Cheers
    At the Edward Carter Gallery in NYC some years ago (the gallery closed around the end of 2001), Adam's prints were a staple of the collection and some were almost always on view. It was a terrific gallery for photographic display with gray fabric walls and bright little lights for each photograph. The Adam's prints were simply dazzling...brilliant high values, and rich low values with blacks so 'deep' you could drown in them. Also at the AIPAD shows in NYC, when Adam's prints (well...pretty much everyone's prints) were displayed they were invariably well illuminated. So....I would absolutely agree that his work looked its' best when the lighting was intense. From the work I've seen, I'd also conclude that he was indeed a virtuoso printer with the materials of his time.

  8. #8

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    Talking Alfred Eisenstaedt at the AGO too

    At the same time as the Ansel Adams exhibit there is complimentary exhibit
    of Alfred Eisenstaedt.

    Both are excellent.

    http://www.iatwm.com/200612/AlfredEi...edt/index.html

  9. #9

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    Re: Ansel Adams Exhibit Art Gallery of Ontario

    I checked out the Ansel Adams exhibit yesterday and it is WELL worth seeing. As others have mentioned, the exhibit included many photos which you may be seeing for the first time, even if you’re a fellow Ansel Adams nut. I've seen a few Adams prints before at AIPAD and the AGO, but never so many at once – and never a Moonrise that large. Very cool.

    One (very reassuring) surprise for me was that many of his prints aren't exceptionally sharp. In “Aspens, New Mexico” for example I saw that the tree closest to the camera isn't very sharp and my first reaction was “Whew – what a relief!” Maybe Adams focused too far past that tree and hyperfocal didn’t work that well on the near tree. Whatever. It doesn’t matter – it’s an awesome print! But what a relief for a novice like me who worries constantly about getting everything sharp. I expect I'll now obsess less about sharpness and focus more on the overall feeling my prints convey.

    The only annoyance: visitors’ cell phones kept ringing, inevitably followed by loud voices saying “I'm at the AGO!” ...

    Also, best time to go: Thursday or Friday after 6 p.m. Fewer people and more opportunity to spend some quality time with each print.

  10. #10

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    Re: Ansel Adams Exhibit Art Gallery of Ontario

    I'd love to see an exhibition like that... 120 Adams images and a Eisenstaedt show at the same time.

    [Heavy sigh!!! ]

    Now, if ONLY they'd send the exhibition out West to Vancouver, BC!

    God's country!

    Cheers
    Life in the fast lane!

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