Featured Print

Monolith, The Face of Half Dome

Ansel Adams

Monolith, The Face of Half Dome, Yosemite National Park, California, 1927

Vintage Parmelian Print

This beautiful photograph is from Ansel Adams' first portfolio "Parmelian Prints of the High Sierras", consisting of 18 prints, privately published in late summer of 1927. Although the print is vintage and over 75 years old, it looks like it was made yesterday.

This portfolio was quite successful, enough so that Adams could begin his photography pursuits full time, leaving behind his previous aspirations of being a classical pianist. He used the term "Parmelian" rather than, say, "photographic" to glamorize the standard silver gelatin process. The extremely thin paper is Kodak Vitava Athena Parchment T.

Adams wrote to his new wife, “My photographs have now reached a stage when they are worthy of the world’s critical examination. I have suddenly come upon a new style which I believe will place my work equal to anything of its kind. I have always favored the effect of engravings–the neat, clean, clear-cut technique fascinates me. In this new effect I will try to combine the two processes of photography and the press into a result that will be exceptionally beautiful and unique.....”

8 x 6 inches on 12 x 10 inch paper, signed in pencil just below the image: $28,000.00, framed in black wood. (SOLD)

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Footnote: "I have a map of the U.S. that's actual size. It says 1 mile = 1 mile." Stephen Wright