In his 45-year visual odyssey Robert Adams captured the splendor and sprawl of the American West and became a pioneer of the New Topographics movement. With more than 200 images, this traveling show (next stop: Los Angeles County Museum of Art, in March) merges pristine landscapes with stark depictions of tract housing, strip malls and deforestation sites to create unsettling dissonances. “The pictures record what we purchased, what we paid and what we could not buy,” Adams wrote. “They document a separation from ourselves, and in turn from the natural world that we professed to love.”
Jack Crager is a New York–based freelance writer and editor. He has covered photography and related subjects for more than two decades, as contributing editor to PopPhoto and as managing editor of AmericanPHOTO.