Tag Archives: landscape

Patagonia’s Sky

A photographic journey through Chilean Patagonia region

The  most beautiful view is the one looking up.

Patagonia’s skies are true works of art. With the drama of a Renaissance painting and the bizarre UFO-like nature of lenticular clouds there is never a dull moment, as if the sky was nature’s form of entertainment. It all just gives way for the spectacular light show that happens this far south leaving you with the memories of the most beautiful saturation and contrasts of colors that can only be found in Patagonia.

“The poetry of the earth is never dead.”

- John Keats

A photographic journey through Chilean Patagonia region A photographic journey through Chilean Patagonia region    Patagonia_Air_07 A photographic journey through Chilean Patagonia region

 

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Patagonia’s Water

A photographic journey through Chilean Patagonia region

It’s hard to describe seeing a glacier for the first time: the seemingly unnatural color, how still it appears to be when in fact it is a moving river, the god-like size that reminds you of your fragile, ephemeral life… all I can say is that I couldn’t stop staring until I had become completely enchanted. And now, thanks to our Quasar tour guide, I can say I have eaten glacier ice straight off of an iceberg.

The might of Patagonia has to lie within its waters. From the spectacular green color of Lake Pehoé to Lake Grey with its floating icebergs and then to be hit with the rapid roaring waterfalls of Salto Grande and Cascada Rio Paine, and finally down comes rain out of clouds that redefine the word drama. Water is all around you, and never in a boring fashion.

“I climbed a path and from the top looked up-stream towards Chile. I could see the river, glinting and sliding through the bone-white cliffs with strips of emerald cultivation either side. Away from the cliffs was the desert. There was no sound but the wind, whirring through thorns and whistling through dead grass, and no other sign of life but a hawk, and a black beetle easing over white stones.”
― Bruce Chatwin

   A photographic journey through Chilean Patagonia region

A photographic journey through Chilean Patagonia region

A photographic journey through Chilean Patagonia region

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Patagonia’s Land

A photographic journey through Chilean Patagonia region

We headed out for adventure. Deep into Chilean Patagonia in Torres del Paine National Park we rode horses for hours with gauchos, explored caves where giants used to live, stared in awe at Cleopatra’s Needles, stopped to take in the first sights of guanaco I have only read about in Charles Darwin’s descriptions and enjoyed endless fields of baby sheep. The first thing that struck me about Patagonia was how untouched it is by man. No red lights or bill boards, no gas stations or pavement and no cell service. It is truly a completely unpolluted environment. You stand in the center of Patagonia, so far from anything familiar, so alone, hours from other humans and as far as the eye can see there is infinite beauty, purity and vast wonderment.

“What on earth makes you choose such an outlandish part of the world to go to? What can be the attraction? These, and similar questions and exclamations I heard from the lips of my friends and acquaintances, when I told them of my intended trip to Patagonia, the land of the Giants. What was the attraction in going to an outlandish place so many miles away? The answer to the question was contained in its own words. Precisely because it was an outlandish place and so far away, I chose it. Palled for the moment with civilization and its surroundings, I wanted to escape somewhere where I could be as far removed from them as possible. There I would be able to penetrate into vast wilds, virgin as yet to the foot of man. Scenes of infinite beauty and grandeur might be lying hidden in the silent solitude of the mountains that bound the barren plains of the Pampas, into whose mysterious recesses no one as yet had ever ventured.”

-Lady Florence Dixie, 1880

A photographic journey through Chilean Patagonia region A photographic journey through Chilean Patagonia region A photographic journey through Chilean Patagonia region A photographic journey through Chilean Patagonia region

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Adam Katseff

You do not want to put Adam and I across from each other at a dinner table too often because we will close a restaurant talking about photography, photographers, film vs. digital, the meaning behind photographs, technical process, how people experience photographs as art, who, in the history of photography, were influential in changing the dialogue in which we communicate through images and how technology is constantly changing photography everyday.

Back this past summer we were on a location shoot in Lake Tahoe with a client that has since become a wonderful friend and her husband who is a photographer was preparing for his first solo show in New York at the Sasha Wolf Gallery came along. It was fascinating to watch him work in the slowed down process of large format film. Of course, I immediately think of Ansel Adams, but some of his heroes are Ad Reinhardt and Hiroshi Sugimoto. In the car he kept a book of photographs from the late 1800s of the Lake Tahoe area and would study them declaring to search for “that waterfall” or point out boulders that now have tunnels cut through them. The great thing about Adam’s work is not that he creates beautiful landscape photographs but that what he sees before you is a totally new way of looking at something we’ve all seen photographed a million times and yet strangely relatable, the way your eyes adjust at night in those peaceful moments in nature.

It was such a thrill to get to see him create and now, to see the end result hanging on the walls of a gallery to be experienced. We sat down to discuss the thought behind his images, how he got to where he is now, and what’s next:

Jamie: How did the idea for the series of Night Landscapes begin?

Adam: We were on a plane back from Hawaii, flying at sunset. The sun sets really fast when you’re flying west to east. I looked away from the window for a couple of minutes and when I looked back, it was black…almost instantly dark. So I was watching the surface of the ocean and it felt like you could almost see the roundness of the Earth. I’m letting my eyes adjust and I start seeing the landscape, the earth, the way I had seen it before the sun had set. And then I realized what I was seeing – I looked again and it’s like, Wait a minute, there’s nothing there, it’s totally pitch black. And it was the memory of that landscape, not the actual landscape itself. It was almost the reflections on the window that I was imagining as the thing.

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