The George Eastman Museum celebrates 100 years of the National Park Service with major photography exhibition opening June 4
Rochester, N.Y., March 10, 2016—To celebrate the 100th anniversary of the formation of the National Park Service, the George Eastman Museum presents Photography and America’s National Parks, an exhibition exploring the role of photography in the development of the parks and in shaping our perception and understanding of these landscapes. The exhibition will be on view from June 4 through October 2, 2016.
“From Yosemite being set aside as publicly held land in 1864 to Pinnacles National Park as the most recent addition in 2013, the lands that make up America’s national parks have been interpreted and enjoyed through photographs for more than 150 years,” said Jamie M. Allen, exhibition curator, Department of Photography, George Eastman Museum. “This exhibition, which spans the 1860s to the present, illuminates the history of the most significant national parks through lush landscape photographs.”
Photography and America’s National Parks includes more than 170 images from late nineteenth- and early twentieth-century photographers to contemporary artists. Photography and America’s National Parks addresses the role that photographers such as Ansel Adams, Alvin Langdon Coburn, Frank Jay Haynes, William Henry Jackson, the Kolb brothers, Eadweard Muybridge, Eliot Porter, Carleton Watkins, and Edward Weston had in shaping our expectations for how the parks are depicted, and how photographs were disseminated to the public through stereographs and postcards. The exhibition will also showcase works by contemporary photographers such as Marion Belanger, Binh Danh, Sean McFarland, Sharon Harper, Mark Klett, Abelardo Morell, David Benjamin Sherry, and Byron Wolfe, whose work draws upon and subverts the history of images made within these natural landscapes.
Drawn primarily from the George Eastman Museum collection, the exhibition also includes works on loan that help to broaden our understanding of this subject. In addition, George Eastman’s travel albums from his trips to national park sites will be on display.
To complement the exhibition, the museum is co-publishing a book with Aperture, titled Picturing America’s National Parks. Available in June, the book features images related to the exhibition, an introductory essay by Jamie M. Allen discussing the relationship between the parks and photography, and a foreword by Bruce Barnes, the Ron and Donna Fielding Director of the George Eastman Museum. The book will be for sale at the Eastman Museum Store and online at eastman.org/store.
Photography and America's National Parks is generously sponsored by Dawn Lipson. Additional support is provided by the Guido and Ellen Palma Foundation. For more information about public programming for the exhibition, including a film series in the museum’s Dryden Theatre, visit eastman.org.
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