From January 26 to May 19, the Kalamazoo Institute of Arts is hosting an exhibition of the work of Ansel Adams, sponsored by Friendship Village and Consumers Credit Union.
The showing is entitled ‘Sight and Feeling’ and it contains twenty-four original photographs placed in a cramped room in the lowest floor of the Institute of Arts. All of the photographs are framed in silver with a big white passe-partout.
The technique of the pictures is gelatin silver print. Besides of the pictures, the exhibition contains a replica of the camera which Adams used to take the pictures back in the first half of the 20th century.
"In my mind's eye, I visualize how a particular . . . sight and feeling will appear on a print. If it excites me, there is a good chance it will make a good photograph.” This quote describes the way Ansel Adams conceived photography.
The work of this Californian photographer is outstanding. His pictures are unique because of the black and white usage with high contrast of shadows and plenty of details.
Most of the pictures show one of the passions of Adams: the breathtaking views of Yosemite National Park in California. These shots are one of the identity signs of this photographer who was a declared environmentalist in love with United States of America’s landscapes.
Besides the Yosemite pictures, there are also some landscapes from Alaska, Colorado, Arizona and New Mexico. Also there is a still life picture, some macros of leaves and tree branches, as well as a portrait of Edward Western.
The negative aspect of the exhibition is the arrangement of the pictures and the misplacement of lights. The crystal of the frames reflects the light which makes it complicated to appreciate some of the works properly. Besides, the space in which the collection is located is really narrow and it is mixed with the museum’s permanent collection.
All the works are labeled with their correspondent information (authorship, place, date, technique…). In addition, there are panels with information about the author and the techniques he used. This is formative for the attendants, taking into account that there is no catalog.
Ansel Adams, Vernal Fall, Yosemite Valley, California, 1920, gelatin silver print | Collection of the KIA, Gift of Wm. John Upjohn, 1995/6.27.6 © 2013 The Ansel Adams Publishing Rights Trust