Ansel Adams exhibition, programming come to region

TRAVERSE CITY — Ragnar “Rags” Avery knew just where to turn for advice when he received his first real camera as a college graduation gift.

“At that time Ansel Adams was extremely popular,” said Avery, a business development consultant and amateur landscape photographer from Kalkaska. “I was very influenced and very enamored of his work and work process. One of my favorite books is his ‘Examples: The Making of 40 Photographs’ in which he gives images and shares their backstory. That book and those images are still my favorites.”

Now Avery will get to see many of those images in person for the first time. “Ansel Adams: Masterworks” is making its northern Michigan debut at Crooked Tree Arts Center in Petoskey.

The museum collection curated by Adams himself includes 47 of the photographer and environmentalist’s most iconic landscapes and lesser-known nature close-ups and portraits, along with a portrait of Adams by James Alinder. The traveling exhibition organized by Turtle Bay Exploration Park in Redding, California has made its way to more than 30 museums in 10 years.

Landau Traveling Exhibitions Manager manager Jeffrey Landau said it’s his most popular show.

“Even though everybody knows Ansel Adams’ name, a whole generation has not seen his work in person.”

The exhibition is at the heart of “Through the Lens: Ansel Adams — His Work, Inspiration and Legacy,” four months of programming based on Adams and photographic art at Crooked Tree in Petoskey and Traverse City…read more