Adams photographed the new housing developments that were springing up out west filled with people looking for a new life in the late 1960s and early 1970s. These were people who dreamed of a new life out west only to discover their newly acquired homes were built in housing tracts surrounded by very little nature and sometimes surrounded by nuclear weapons plants.
Automobiles and expressways were also photographed by Adams as a source of change that was changing the environment of the west. More people meant more cars, which meant more roads to be built and more artificial lighting. Adams’ work explores the natural views and natural beauty that have been destroyed by “progress.”
"Robert Adams." Matthew Marks Gallery, Web. 18 Dec. 2012. < http://www.matthewmarks.com/artists/robert-adams >.
"Robert Adams." Museum of Contemporary Photography, 2005, Web. 14 Dec. 2012.
< http://www.mocp.org/collections/permanent/adams_robert.php >.
"Robert Adams." PBS.org, Web. 18 Dec. 2012. < http://www.pbs.org/art21/artists/robert-adams >.
"Robert Adams: Landscapes of Harmony and Dissonance." Getty.edu, Web. 14 Dec. 2012. < http://www.getty.edu/art/exhibitions/adams >.
Books the Central Library own on Robert Adams
Our Lives and Our Children : Photographs Taken Near the Rocky Flat Nuclear Weapons Plant
What Can We Believe Where? : Photographs of the American West
Disfarmer became the resident photographer in the town of Heber Springs, Arkansas. Disfarmer is known for his simple stark black and white portraits of the rural people in his town. With no formal training, he built a studio and used commercially available glass plates and went on to capture the people of Heber Springs in the early to mid-1900s.
All of his subjects were photographed in direct north light, either sitting or standing facing the camera directly. Photographed in their day clothes, the portraits reveal the simple small town, a region, an era, a way of life, now long gone. His stark unadorned black and white realistic portrayals of his subjects contrast with the Technicolor world we live in today.
Disfarmer. Web. 10 Jan. 2012. < http://www.disfarmer.com >.
Disfarmer. Web. 11 Jan. 2012. < http://disfarmer.org >.
Encyclopedia of Kansas. Eileen Turan and Keith Melton Arkansas Arts Center. 2011. Web. 10 Jan. 2012.
< http://encyclopediaofarkansas.net/encyclopedia/entry-detail.aspx?entryID=455 >.
Books the Central Library owns on Disfarmer:
Disfarmer : The Vintage Prints
Disfarmer : Heber Springs Portraits, 1939-1946 : From the Collections of Peter Miller and Julia Scully
Original Disfarmer Photographs
They used an 8 x 10-inch view camera and had a very specific way of photographing these structures. Although they photographed these buildings from a number of different angles, it was always with a straightforward "objective" point of view. They shot only on overcast days, so as to avoid shadows, and early in the morning during the seasons of spring and fall.
Both were influenced by “Neue Sachlichkeit” or the “New Objectivity” a group of German artists in the 1920s whose works were executed in a realistic style. This style was applied towards literature, art, and architecture; it was meant to imply a turn towards practical engagement with the world—an all-business attitude, the hard fact, the predilection for functional work, professional conscientiousness, and usefulness.” Also influential in their work were German photographers Karl Blossfeldt, August Sander, and Albert Renger-Patzsch.
The Becher school has influenced a number of German photographers (specifically those photographers associated with the Düsseldorf School of Photography) including Andreas Gursky, Candida Hofer, Thomas Ruff,Thomas Struth, and Petra Wunderlich. The Canadian Edward Burtynskyalso works in a similar mode.
Berned Becher passed away on June 22, 2007.
Interview with Bernd and Hilla Becher. ASX.com, 2002. Web. 15 Dec. 2011.
< http://www.americansuburbx.com/2010/03/theory-interview- with-bernd-and-hilla.html >.
Slade, George. "Reading: "Typology" in Encyclopedia of Twentieth Century Photography." GeloRobinson.com . Web. In Encyclopedia of
Twentieth Century Photography, 2005. 9 Dec 2011.
Stimson, Blake. " The Photographic Comportment of Bernd and Hilla Becher ." Tate Papers (2004): Web. 7 Dec. 2011.
Tittel, Cornelius. "High Precision Industrial Age Souvenirs." signandsite.com. (2005): Web. 11 Jan. 2012.
< http://www.signandsight.com/features/338.html >.
Books the Central Library owns on the Bechers:
Bernd and Hilla Becher : Life and Work
The Düsseldorf School of Photography
Born in Boston, MA, October 9, 1932, Plowden began working for the Great Northern Railway in 1959, and then studied under Minor White and Walker Evans. He photographed his first steam train when he was 11 years old and that love stayed with him through his life.
After photographing many steam engines Plowden decided to photograph small towns. He felt these towns showed the weathered soul of America and their uniqueness was disappearing due to the homogenization of American culture through the building of highways, shopping malls, and the Walmart. America now has the same fast food places and the same gas stations.
Many ask Plowden, “why do you photograph such old things?” His answer, “I say, because I think they’re of tremendous value. If you tear down what was there, perhaps you lose sight of who you were, and then of who we are. If we don’t have tangible evidence – if it’s all gone, I think we begin to lose our bearings. That’s my feeling anyway. I think we are very much of a rootless, and a very discouraged, country.” ( Photographing America's).
While looking at Plowden’s photographs there is a sense of sadness, sadness and loss. Sadness because American as lost so much of its culture that it will never regain again. His photos show a culture lost. Plowden says in an interview, “"I think we've become very, very inhuman. We've lost the art of communication and neighborliness.” (Fox.).
"American Views: Photographs by David Plowden." Web. 11 Jan. 2012.
< http://people.virginia.edu/~ds8s/david-p/david-p.html >.
Fox, Randy. " David Plowden: Photographing the Soul of America." Web. 15 Dec. 2011.
< http://www.huffingtonpost.com/randy-fox/photographing-america_b_999406.html >.
"Photographing America’s Weathered Soul: An Interview With David Plowden." Web. 15 Dec. 2011.
< http://www.americanelegy.com/photographing-americas-weathered-soul-an-interview-with-david-plowden/ >.
Yale University. Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library. " Imprints. David Plowden: A Retrospective." Web. 11 Jan. 2012.
< http://www.library.yale.edu/beinecke/blplow.htm >.
Books the Central Library owns on David Plowden:
David Plowden : Vanishing Point : Fifty Years of Photography
A Handful of Dust : Photographs of Disappearing America
Requiem for Steam : The Railroad Photographs of David Plowden
Small Town America
A time of Trains
These photographers were hired so they could show the rest of America how the rural poor were living and what the government was doing to assist them. Some of the most famous Depression-eraphotographerswereWalker Evansand Dorothea Lange. Not only did the New Deal provide work for photographers but it illustrated the need for New Deal programs which were a source of controversy at the time.
Gorman, Juliet. " New Deal Narratives." 2001. Web. 11 Jan. 2012.
< http://oberlin.edu/library/papers/honorshistory/2001-Gorman/FSA/default.html >.
Indiana Univiersity Libraries. " Celebrating New Deal arts and culture : Documenting America. " 2006. Web. 11 Jan. 2012.
< http://www.indiana.edu/~libsalc/newdeal/photographers.html >.
Library of Congress. " America from the Great Depression to World War II: Black and white photographs from the FSA-OWI
1935-1945. " 1998. Web. 11 Jan. 2012. < http://memory.loc.gov/ammem/fsahtml/ >.
Library Of Congress. " New Deal Programs: Selected Library of Congress Resources." 2011. Web. 11 Jan. 2012.
< http://www.loc.gov/rr/program/bib/newdeal/fsa.html >.
Meyer, Chris. " The FSA Photographs: Information, or Propaganda? " BU Arts and Sciences Writing Program. Web. 11 Jan. 2012.
< http://www.bu.edu/writingprogram/journal/past-issues/issue-1/the-fsa-photographs-information-or-propaganda >.
Books the Central Library own on the FSA Photographers:
Dorothea Lange : The Crucial Years, 1930-1946
FSA : The American Vision
Hard Luck Blues : Roots Music Photographs from the Great Depression
The Likes of Us : America in the Eyes of the Farm Security Administration
Migrant Mother : How a Photograph Defined the Great Depression
Walker Evans : Lyric Documentary
Rochester Public Library, Arts Division