Join Us for William Neill’s Artist Reception on November 23rd from 1-3pm
In 1977, photographer William Neill found his life’s path redirected when he moved to Yosemite to work for the National Park Service. Not long after this, he began working at The Ansel Adams Gallery as a staff photographer, teaching visitors all he could about the art form and the place that he loved. Mr. Neill has said that: “Perhaps one of the greatest joys of being a photographer to me is to see the light on the landscape, seeing its daily cycles change with each season and shift with each day’s weather. I revel in the light. I am its disciple.” While other itinerant interests would take him on adventures far and wide, from the American Southwest to the Himalaya to Antarctica, he would make Yosemite his permanent home.
His life in photography since has been an amazing journey as witnessed by the incredible and intimate imagery that has resulted, as well as the numerous books and articles written in the process. Between November 17th, 2019 and January 4th, 2020, The Ansel Adams Gallery will be exhibiting “Light on the Landscape – Photographs by William Neill” featuring work made throughout an illustrious career. A reception with the artist will be held on Saturday, November 23rd from 1-3pm, on what will no doubt be a beautiful autumn day in the park!
Celebrating the solo exhibition “Yosemite Reunion: Impressions of a Park”
This past weekend, West Coast landscape artist Martino Hoss joined our gallery in Yosemite in celebration of his new solo exhibition. Hoss shared stories of his prolific and versatile career as an artist, where he has explored many mediums including pastels on copper, painting, serigraphs, block prints, monotypes, pen & ink drawings, mobiles and murals.
In his exhibition “Yosemite Reunion: Impressions of a Park,” Hoss has created a luminous body of work using pastels on copper—a medium that he works in to bring out the inner light of the landscapes he composes.
The metallic, warm quality of the copper shines through the vibrancy of the soft pastels, offering a jewel-like representation of the Yosemite’s majesty.
At the reception, many friends and art lovers gathered to experience Hoss’ work in person. Elegantly framed to protect the delicacy of each piece, Martino Hoss’ work provides viewers with a sensual interpretation of the atmospheric light so particular to the Yosemite landscape.
Enjoy this collection of moments from the reception. To view the full exhibition, please see our collection of Martino Hoss pastels on copper.
For questions about the artwork, or to preview a particular piece in your home, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. With a little bit of photoshop magic, we can superimpose the piece in your space, helping you to complete your vision.
Katia Hetter, CNN • Published 14th October 2019
(CNN) — To Matthew Adams, Ansel Adams was simply his grandpa.
Growing up in Fresno, California, Matthew would spend time with him during short summer vacations in Yosemite National Park, where his grandfather taught photography workshops.
“He was definitely a part of our lives, but I actually didn’t really grasp his national importance until after he had passed away” in 1984, said Adams, who was in high school at the time.
“He was Grandpa Ansel,” said Adams, 52. “I would have loved to have sat down over a beer with him (as an adult).”
Adams has become an expert on his renowned grandfather’s photography and conservation work, serving as president of The Ansel Adams Gallery.
His great-grandparents, Harry and Anne Best, first launched it as a summer gallery inside a tent. It has been located inside Yosemite National Park in one form or another since 1902…read more on CNN.com
Our gallery is excited to present an ethereal body of work by multimedia artist Martino Hoss, an artist with a deep and rich tie to Yosemite National Park. In an interview with our gallery, Martino shares stories of his greatest inspiration—his grandmother, pivotal moments that informed his artistic career, and the essence of Yosemite he is able to capture in the luminous medium of pastel on copper.
What drove you to be an artist?
MH: Growing up, my grandmother was an artist, and she was probably one of the biggest influences in my life. Also, my aunt Mary who was my father’s cousin. She was also an artist and she did a lot of work of Yosemite. But my grandmother I think as the biggest influence.
How did your grandmother influence you to become an artist?
MH: My grandmother, Della Taylor Hoss, lived in Palo Alto and when I was a small child we used to take walks [there]. We would pick up seed pods and stuff like that and bring them back to her studio, and she would draw. She had a little place [in her house] called the ”creative oasis” and it was a very mysterious place above the garage. I used to love to go up there and watch her work.
Ultimately how she influenced my work was [with] the first print that I ever pulled which was a serigraph. [It] was silkscreen. I did it in my grandmother’s studio and I could only fit 30 prints there to dry. That became my edition size for silkscreens. I’ve done about 45 editions over the years. The way she influenced me was her discipline and dedication to her craft, and that she did art until she died when she was 96 years old.
Did growing up in a family with such strong ties to Yosmeite and the Sierra have an influence on your art?
MH: Yes, growing up and coming to Yosemite definitely influenced my artwork. As a young child, we would pretty much come up every year, whether for the Bracebridge Dinner where my father one year was the Visiting Squire, or floating down the Merced, or just hiking around in the valley. Then as I got older, [hiking] up into the high country…just having that deep connection. I draw upon it now when I do work. In doing this show, there are certain memories I have in Tuolumne Meadows or in the Valley as a small child, in all seasons. I remember winters when it snowed and there was 30 feet of snow in the valley and we stayed in Yosemite Lodge… And the fact that I’m a landscape artist and that Yosemite is one of the more beautiful places in the world…it definitely influenced me.
What was it like growing up in a family with such a rich history in Yosemite?
MH: I think growing up in a family that had an incredibly rich history with Yosemite was very unique from the fact that my grandparents worked here, my parents worked here, and we did too. My grandparents [grew] up with Virginia and Ansel, and then my father [was] best friends with Mike Adams until my father passed away last year. And also growing up with Mike and Jeannie [Adams]. I’ve known them throughout my life, and Jeannie…gave me a lot of support. I could always go to her with ideas and she was always helpful with inspiration and a lot of things about Yosemite.
You’ve made inroads with several different mediums. How has that evolved and why have you settled on soft pastel and copper at the current time?
MH: I have developed a number of different mediums. I like to work in different media. I work with the printmaking techniques and wood blocks and painting and the pastels and copper. Every time I approach a new medium—like with silkscreens and serigraphs—I try to do something that hasn’t been done before. When I did the serigraphs I was my own master printer. I made my own screens. They were all printed by hand. I did those for about 25 years, and I did about 45 different editions of landscapes, west coast.
And then there was a class at the Art Center College of Design called media experimentation and it taught us how to use incongruous materials. I decided I wanted to do one-of-a-kind pieces and I wanted them to be original—to do something that nobody had done before. So, I had some copper in my studio and some chalk pastels and I started to experiment with the chalk pastel on the copper and also on tin and brass and canvas and different materials. I chose the copper due to its luminosity and it is just a beautiful metal. I thought for this show, pastels on copper would really be able to capture the light and atmosphere of Yosemite.
How does Yosemite translate visually onto copper with pastel?
MH: I think that chalk pastels on copper really work well visually as far as being able to translate Yosemite Valley and the park. The luminosity of the copper reflects an inner light. There’s something about certain times of day…when you look at the granite when the sun is going down on El Cap…it looks like it’s lit from within. Or a waterfall, the light and the mist…there is an inner light. I thought that the pastel and copper medium would be an excellent choice. [When I started] this show, it actually surpassed my expectations of the pieces that I was able to create.
What are the advantages over other mediums?
MH: The advantage of the chalk pastel medium is that [it allows me to] do the pieces with just my hands and my fingers. I don’t use any brushes…there is a real immediacy to them. There’s a freshness, there’s a purity. You can’t overwork them. If you overwork them, the pastels stop sticking and you have to scrape it off and start over again. Going into [a] particular piece, you have to have a clear vision of what you want it to be and then you create it very directly [from that vision].
What’s your favorite aspect of the art making process?
MH: One of my favorite aspects of making art is a sense of discovery. I love the unexpected. I’ll start a piece and I’ll have an idea but at some point in the process, they become what they want to be. They become alive. They, to a certain degree, will show you how they want to be finished. And you need to be open. You need to listen to that. And I love that, and feel very blessed to be able to create.
What’s your favorite part about making art in Yosemite?
MH: I think my favorite aspect of making art in Yosemite is the fact that from age 1 until now, emotionally I have so much to draw upon from my impressions as a young child, as a teenager, as a young adult, bringing my children up here, and my wife up here, backpacking with my father. I have so much rich history and memories [here] in Yosemite. I can’t think of another landscape that I have so much to draw upon.
Last week, our gallery partnered with Yosemite National Park and the Yosemite Conservancy to host the 9th Annual Gateway Expressions Student Art and Photography Contest! This contest celebrates the artistic creativity of local youth living in Yosemite’s gateway communities.
Announcement: For every Ansel Adams Bridalveil Fall Modern Replica purchased, our Gallery will donate 10% to the Yosemite Conservancy Bridalveil Restoration Fund.
For Ansel Adams, few landscapes held the creative potential of Yosemite National Park. Though he photographed many thousands of miles of America’s wilderness during his prolific career, Yosemite remained his particular passion and artistic muse. The photographs he made there—of rugged El Capitan, the iconic Moon and Half Dome, and many, many more—are some of the most iconic images of our shared natural history.
Throughout Adams’ decades photographing our national parks, his unwavering commitment to their conservation was a constant. Through his advocacy and leadership in the Sierra Club, he was and remains a powerful voice for the preservation of our wild spaces.
Adams’ legacy is present wherever people come together to care for our public wilderness, but it’s safe to say few events would have thrilled him more than the Yosemite Facelift: an annual initiative put on by the Yosemite Climbing Association to clean up the park after its heavy use during the busy summer months.
Fresh off of celebrating its fifteenth year, the Facelift—organized by the Yosemite Climbing Association—mobilizes some 2,000 volunteers annually for a six-day, five-night cleanup. According to Ken Yager, President of the YCA, Volunteers remove garbage, scrub graffiti, and even remove non-indigenous plant species. So far, he says, the total garbage collected weighs in at well over one million pounds.
What’s more, the Facelift isn’t stopping in Yosemite. In addition to maintaining the organization’s roots in Yosemite, Yager says, they’re hoping to expand to other parks soon, offering their expertise to other wilderness areas looking to develop similar volunteer communities.
It would be easy to measure the importance of the Yosemite Facelift in pounds of garbage recovered, or volunteers assembled. But far more than an afternoon spent picking up trash, the Yosemite Facelift is an opportunity for dedicated volunteers to form an enduring relationship with the park—and with one another. Armed with trash bags and reflective vests, volunteers fan out across the park, after the summer crowds have gone home, seeking out its hidden places and grand vistas to ensure that no trash or debris from its busy season pollutes the rainy and cold months of winter.
For many, it’s a rare opportunity to give back to the wilderness they love, and to reaffirm their relationship with it as the seasons begin to change.
What better way to deepen one’s relationship with Yosemite than to participate in a form of communal stewardship?
That kind of relationship—one based on conservation and service—is one that’s truly in the spirit of Ansel Adams’ legacy.
At this year’s Facelift, the Yosemite Climbing Association invites you to download the @litterati App and help track the trash in Yosemite. It’s easy: Just photograph the piece of litter, tag it and then discard it properly. The YCA will be able to see what kind of trash volunteers are finding! Download the app on the App Store or Google Play.
Unable to make it to the park this year? Plan for 2020! The Yosemite Climbing Association’s website lists details for each annual event as plans are made and shared with the public.
#YosemiteFacelift #YosemiteFacelift2019 #Litterati #PackYourTrash #Yosemite
It should probably come as no surprise that Ansel Adams loved spending time outdoors, his legacy being so deeply connected to the natural wonder of the American West. But even though his time spent in the wilderness was often connected with his work, Ansel still loved to partake in a classic American tradition: the family camping trip.
It was in 1938 that Ansel, his wife Virginia, and their children, Michael and Anne, set out for a camping trip to Bodie, California. In 1938, Bodie was well on its way to becoming one of America’s most notorious ghost towns. However, if you’d have visited it at its prime, you would have found some 30 gold mines, 65 saloons, numerous brothels, gambling halls, along with a number of legitimate businesses. Like many other booming mining camps during the time, Bodie earned a wide reputation for violence and lawlessness.
The Adams family camping trip in 1938 saw a different side of Bodie. At one point, the prodigious boomtown had produced some $90 to $100 million during the peak hunt for gold. By the time Ansel and family arrived, most everything was abandoned. Mines had long been shut down, and with business collapsing, residents left whatever they couldn’t carry behind in Bodie. The once lawless town of the wild, wild West gave way to a much quieter, though undoubtedly spooky, place to explore during their camping trip.
“It was probably the first time I’d ever camped out,” remembers Michael. “I may have slept out in the valley—we kept beds outside the house there—but this was the first time I remember camping where we built a fire and cooked over it.”
Michael was five years old at the time. After the family headed up to Tioga pass, they parked the car, and hiked with backpacks to a small tarn to the south. “We camped that night at one of those little tarns,” says Michael. “We had a campfire, and we cooked over it. I can remember looking up at the stars after we went to bed.”
In the morning, Michael was tasked with getting some water for the morning’s pot of coffee. From there, things went downhill. Michael took a small can down to the lake, and found a large log covered with frost jutting out over the water. “I managed to step out on it, and dip down to get some water,” he recalls. “But just as I was done filling the can, I slipped off the log and into the water. It was probably only up to my knees, but it was freezing cold.”
Even for the most determined campers, a cold, wet five-year-old has a way of throwing off the day’s agenda. “We decided to walk back to the ranger station at Tioga pass,” he says. “The ranger was really nice; he had a fire going in his stove, and I was able to get warmed up.”
Once Michael was warm and dry, the family continued on to explore the abandoned ruins of Bodie. “We stayed there most of the day. Ansel took a number of photographs,” recalls Michael, among them, his now iconic images of two abandoned buildings, and an abandoned horse-drawn hearse. From their appearance, the buildings in Ansel’s photograph look as if they could have been burgeoning saloons from Bodie’s golden days. And the hearse…a mystery perhaps owned by a businessman during the town’s boom, only to leave it behind during its quick decline.
After leaving Bodie, the family came back through Lee Vining. “There was a Bodie Mike’s there—you could get a bite to eat, but they also had slot machines,” recalls Michael. “Ansel played the slot machines, and I remember being fascinated by them.” Perhaps, after a morning spent drying off a cold, wet kid, even a great outdoorsman like Ansel Adams just needed a little bit of indoor fun.
THE ANSEL ADAMS GALLERY
YOSEMITE NATIONAL PARK, CA 95389