A Unique Opportunity of Fine Art Photography – John Sexton

by by Evan Russel, Curator – The Ansel Adams Gallery July 16, 2012
The Unique Offer

In 1980, Jeanne Falk Adams invited John Sexton to exhibit at The Ansel Adams Gallery in Yosemite Valley, becoming the only photographer – besides Ansel – to be so honored at that time.  This relationship between John and The Gallery has continued unabated during the 30 years since that first solo show.   Today, we are thrilled to celebrate this relationship by offering our collectors, friends and fellow art lovers a chance to add one of John’s original prints to their collection at a special price.  Normally these unique offers are for never-before-printed images, however this month, we have arranged to present John’s, “White Boulders and Forest, Dawn, Yosemite National Park, California,” which, although previously printed, has not been readily available to collectors for some time.  While John’s prints start at $1,000, you can now add one to your private collection for $750 – 25% off the initial retail price.  Each print is made by Mr. Sexton, by hand in his darkroom, and printed to current archival standards, 11×14 in size, signed, as well as mounted, matted and ready for framing.  The time to purchase will begin at 9:00 AM Pacific Time on Monday, July 16th, and will expire upon the close of business, Sunday, July 22nd at 6:00 PM.  Once the offer has expired, we anticipate an order fulfillment time of approximately four weeks to ensure the quality of each individual order.  This print offer is available for a very limited time, after which, the print will return to full price.   Please visit www.anseladams.com/unique to purchase, or email our curator, Evan Russel, at evan@anseladams.com if you have questions about the prints or shipping.

The Story of the Image

In the preface to John Sexton’s “Recollections,” Arthur Ollman writes that John’s “images identify harmony. . . . . even sanctuary.”  The truth could not be more eloquent or succinct.  I myself first came across Mr. Sexton’s work in an article that I was reading while in a metropolitan café, during a lunch hour rush.  As I read, the cacophony of this routine experience ebbed in relationship to the tranquility I was now being offered through John’s interpretation of the world.  It was an elaboration of the natural scene that I had truly never witnessed before: small but big, luminous but subtle, quiet and open – true harmony.  All at once in the mode of the great landscape photographers before him, while at the same time with a visual syntax and poetry all his own, John’s work makes even the smallest, most peaceful scene seem grand in its way.  I find this to be no more evident, than in “White Boulders and Forest, Dawn, Yosemite National Park.”  The image, made in 2003 in the High Country of The Yosemite, makes the quiet edge of a placid, unassuming, Lodgepole lined pond immediately secular and sacred – welcoming any and all to its shores, while also encouraging them to look on from a distance so they may absorb and share all that this sanctuary has to offer.

The Story of the Artist

John Sexton was born in 1953, and has lived on the Monterey Peninsula in California for more than thirty years. Respected as a photographer, master printmaker, author, and workshop instructor, he is best known for his luminous, quiet, black and white photographs of the natural environment.

John’s most recent book is Recollections: Three Decades of Photographs, an award-winning retrospective volume, published in late 2006 by Ventana Editions. John’s previous award-winning books include Quiet Light, a monograph representing fifteen years of his work, and Listen to the Trees, which were published by Bulfinch Press/Little, Brown and Company, along with Places of Power: The Aesthetics of Technology published by Ventana Editions.

He is Director of the John Sexton Photography Workshops program, and teaches numerous photography workshops each year for other programs in the United States and abroad, emphasizing printing technique and mastery of the Zone System. Some of these other programs include: Anderson Ranch Arts Center, The Ansel Adams Gallery, Maine Photographic Workshops, and The Palm Beach Workshops.

His informed and entertaining lectures for photographic and professional organizations, colleges and universities, and museums discuss the aesthetic and technical aspects of fine black and white photography. He has presented lectures for, among others, George Eastman House, Center for Creative Photography at the University of Arizona, Boston University, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Museum of Photographic Arts, and the Seattle Art Museum.

A recipient of the 2005 North American Nature Photography Association Lifetime Achievement Award, John is a consultant to Eastman Kodak Company and other photographic manufacturers. He worked as both Technical and Photographic Assistant, and then Technical Consultant, to Ansel Adams from 1979 to 1984. Following Mr. Adams’ death Sexton served as Photographic Special Projects Consultant to The Ansel Adams Publishing Rights Trust. From 1985 to 1993 he was a member of the Board of Trustees of The Friends of Photography.

John’s photographs are included in permanent collections, exhibitions, and publications throughout the world. His work has been featured on the CBS Sunday Morning show, and on the MacNeil Lehrer News Hour. Bank of America, General Motors, and Eastman Kodak Company have used his photographs in national advertising campaigns. Sexton’s photographs have been featured in numerous periodicals including: Time, Life, American Photo, Backpacker, Photo Techniques, Darkroom Photography, LensWork Quarterly, View Camera, Black and White, Zoom, Outdoor Photographer, Outside, TWA Ambassador, Southern Accents, and Popular Photography.

Please be sure to check out more of John’s work at www.johnsexton.com.  You can also view more of his work on the Gallery’s website, www.anseladams.com.

Happenings at The Ansel Adams Gallery


Much like the rest of the country, Yosemite has succumbed to the recent heat wave.   As a result, it has left the road warriors and locals alike seeking relief via a prodigious dip in the Merced River – or a soft serve ice cream from Degnan’s Café.  By the time it has reached the Yosemite Valley floor, the Merced River has traveled close to 25 miles from the bases of Mt. Lyell, Merced Peak, and Mt. Ansel Adams, has carved its way through stubborn granite, momentary calmed in High Country lakes and resumed its fervor over numerous cascades and waterfalls, before arriving at the Happy Isles.  After flowing through the Valley, the Merced tumbles down and through the “Wild and Scenic” lower canyon, out to Briceburg and Lake McClure.  Currently on exhibition at The Gallery – in honor of this architect of Yosemite and provider to aquatic deprived – is The Merced River Show:  From Mt. Ansel Adams to Briceburg, featuring work by: Michael Frye, Mike Osborne, Charles Cramer, Keith S. Walklet, Rex Naden, Jeffrey Conley, William Neill, Ray McSavaney, Mark Citret, Vaughn Hutchins, Alan Ross, Scot Miller and John Sexton.

If you are coming to Yosemite later this season, please be sure to come by and see the new ink and oil paintings by Penny Otwell, on our walls from August 20th through September 30th.  We will be holding a reception for Penny on Thursday, September 13th from 3-5 in the afternoon.