Ansel Adams - Photographs New York Thursday, April 8, 2021 | Phillips

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  • Catalogue Essay

    In 1933 Adams travelled to New York City to show his work to Alfred Stieglitz. While no exhibition at Stieglitz’s gallery, An American Place, was initially offered, the two began a lively correspondence. Adams thoroughly absorbed Stieglitz’s philosophy upon photography, and his concept of the Equivalent struck an especially deep chord: that the photograph must communicate the emotions the photographer experiences at the scene before the camera. Stieglitz famously had photographed a sequence of clouds in 1922 that he titled Music: A Sequence of Ten Photographs, and he spoke of the images as being the visual equivalents of the symphony of sound he experienced in his mind while gazing upward. Adams’s Cloud, 1935, is his homage to his mentor who finally granted him an exhibition at An American Place in 1936.

    A close variant of this image, clearly made at the same time, was reproduced on the cover of Making a Photograph, Adams’s first technical book on photography. His procedural notes for that very similar picture read, ‘6 in. lens, G Filter. Eastman Supersensitive Panchromatic film, full development in Pyro. Printed rather deeply on medium P.M.C. Bromide paper, full development in Amidol.’



Gelatin silver print.
5 1/4 x 7 in. (13.3 x 17.8 cm)
Signed in pencil on the mount; Carmel credit stamp with title and date, and annotations in an unidentified hand, in ink on the reverse of the mount.

$20,000 - 30,000 

Sold for $25,200

Contact Specialist

Sarah Krueger
Head of Department, Photographs

Vanessa Hallett
Worldwide Head of Photographs and Deputy Chairman, Americas



New York Auction 8 April 2021