Photographs by Robert Adams.
Yale University Press, New Haven,2012.
100 pp., 46 tritone illustrations,
Skogen is the Swedish word for forest, and while the dense woods featured in Robert Adams’s most recent series of photographs grow near his home in Oregon, the pictures evoke a wild utopia, and convey a hushed, primeval awe. In this volume, the latest to document Adams’s ongoing quest to find form amid the chaos of nature, shadows predominate, tempered by an ambiguous light that is unique to the Pacific Northwest. Skogen features forty-six previously unpublished images, a body of work that is among the most pictorially complex of Adams’s distinguished career. Also included are an introduction by the artist and a poem by the acclaimed poet Denise Levertov. This pairing is meaningful; as Michael Fried wrote in Bookforum, ‘Adams’s artistic ideal…has much in common with that of a certain sort of lyric poem, one that similarly has not the slightest room for carelessness of any sort.’