On the Wall: Life's A Beach

Now on view at the Pensacola Museum of Art in Florida
Now on view at the Pensacola Museum of Art in Florida.© David Silver Photo
Archival pigment print. Now on view at the Corcoran Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C.Image courtesy of the artist. ©Caitlin Teal Price
Now on view at the Corcoran Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C.© Nicholas Nixon, Courtesy Fraenkel Gallery, San Francisco, and Pace/MacGill Gallery, New York
Gelatin silver print, 10 15/16 x 13 15/16 inches. Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington, DC. Museum purchase, William A. Clark Fund, 1991.3. Now on view at the Corcoran Gallery of Art.© Courtesy Scurlock Studio Records, Archives Center, National Museum of American History
Photograph by Ansel Adams, gelatin silver print, David H. Arrington Collection. Now on view at the Peabody Essex Museum in Massachusetts.© 2011 The Ansel Adams Publishing Rights Trust
Collection Center for Creative Photography, The University of Arizona; Photograph by Ansel Adams. Now on view at the Peabody Essex Museum in Massachusetts.©2011 The Ansel Adams Publishing Rights Trust
Photograph by Ansel Adams; Collection Center for Creative Photography, The University of Arizona. Now on view at the Peabody Essex Museum in Massachusetts.©2011 The Ansel Adams Publishing Rights Trust
Photograph by Ansel Adams; Collection Center for Creative Photography, The University of Arizona.©2011 The Ansel Adams Publishing Rights Trust

It's nearly August. The vernal rays of summer are beating down upon us, beckoning us to leave our air-conditioned boxes and journey to any number of aqueous environs. To get you in gear for the hottest part of the season, we have rounded up three photography exhibitions devoted to the theme of water. If you aren't close to the cooling element, perhaps gaze longingly at these images and be inspired.

Massimo Vitali, Rosignano 3 Women, 1995
Massimo Vitali, Rosignano 3 Women, 1995
Image courtesy Massimo Vitali.

The Deep Element: Photography at the Beach
Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., through October 14

This group exhibition features work from artists who all photographed a common subject of recreation in modern culture: the beach. Works from late 20th-century greats like Harry Callahan and Garry Winograd show a vintage version of the beach, while other images from contemporary photographers like Massimo Vitali and Caitlin Teal Price paint a scene that may be more colorful, but hasn't changed all that much. Well, maybe a little: when the photo was in black-and-white, we didn't know the color of the Speedo.

Young Kelly Slater, (left to right) Todd Holland, Scott McCranels, Rich Rudolph, Matt Kechle and Charlie Kuhn.
Young Kelly Slater, (left to right) Todd Holland, Scott McCranels, Rich Rudolph, Matt Kechle and Charlie Kuhn.
© Tony Aruzza

Surfing Florida: A Photographic History
Pensacola Museum of Art, Pensacola, FL, through September 1

This year marks a century of modern surfing in North America, and the Pensacola Museum of Art is celebrating with an exhibition that showcases work from more than 25 photographers who have captured the sport in Florida. From black-and-white images of oversized wood boards, to photos depicting members of surf culture displaying their best assets, to today's tricky wave riders—this exhibition from the Sunshine State attempts to give Californian and Hawaiian surf culture a run for its money.

Stream, Sea, Clouds, Rodeo Lagoon, Marin County, California, 1962
Stream, Sea, Clouds, Rodeo Lagoon, Marin County, California, 1962
© 2011 The Ansel Adams Publishing Rights Trust

Ansel Adams: At the Water's Edge
Peabody Essex Museum, Salem, MA, through October 8

While Ansel Adams was known for his iconic photographs of the monolithic Yosemite National Park and other rugged landscapes, he also had a softer side. He spent much of his time photographing watery landscapes too—tides, rivers, lakes and waterfalls—fixating on the passage of time over a landscape with his large format camera. This exhibition showcases more than 100 images by the iconic photographer, some of which are lesser-known to the public.

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