New York

Robert Adams

Castelli Graphics

In 1974 Robert Adams came out with a book of photographs called The New West: Landscapes Along the Colorado Front Range, and then in 1977 a book called Denver: A Photographic Survey of the Metropolitan Area. The New West is a rubric of sorts for all the photography, for it documents just that phenomenon, a West that no longer abides with misconceptions of it, a West that is neither the Old West of frontier nor the Free West of natural life. Rather the New West is, in part, a spotty sprawl of social forms, alienated from both human life and natural context.

In effect, the photography documents an economic necessity at odds with a Romantic ideal (misbegotten in itself) of the humanization of nature. The facts are the facts, it says; alienated forms of social life are no less evident west of Missouri. The photography presents the evidence with an absence of polemical protest that allows it (

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