The Andrew Smith Gallery is located in Tucson, Arizona and has been selling and buying world renowned photographs for more than 40 years. The gallery manages and brokers important photography collections, archives and individual Masterpieces of Photography.

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Tucson, AZ 85705

PHONE: 505.984.1234

Currently by appointment only.

Andrew Smith Gallery Photography Auctions LLC

is pleased to announce our upcoming auction:



from K2 to the Matterhorn by Vittorio Sella

will be sold at the direction of and as a benefit

auction for the Appalachian Mountain Club,

America’s oldest non-profit conservation

and recreation organization.

Tuesday, April 27, 2021

The live auction begins at

11:00 am Eastern - 8:00 am Pacific on and

Lot 2195



Starting bid: $2,000

AMAZING LANDSCAPE PHOTOGRAPHY from K2 to the Matterhorn by Vittorio Sella. Before Ansel Adams became the leading outdoor photographer in the world and the face of the Sierra Club, Vittorio Sella (1859-1943) was the leading landscape photographer in the world and the face of the Appalachian Mountain Club. Based in Boston, the Appalachian Mountain Club was founded in 1876 and is Americas oldest non-profit conservation and recreation organization. Through their co-founder, Charles Fay, and his association with the Italian Alpine Club, they became acquainted with Vittorio Sella’s family and his photography.

Lot 2170


K2 Western wall and camp 1909

Starting bid: $2,500

Vittorio Sella created the greatest exhibition of his early career, for the February 1893 Geographical Exhibition of Turin, where his prints won the Grand Gold Medal and Diploma of Honour. In 1893 the Appalachian Mountain Club acquired Sella’s prize winning 500 print exhibition. Over the next 20 years the AMC received Sella exhibition prints of his series in Alaska, two expeditions to the Himalayas and one to the Rwenzori in Africa. These vintage exhibition prints are the prints offered in this auction

This auction contains 550 original exhibition prints; highlights include over 40 spectacular multi-plate panorama views and rare gelatin silver and collodion views of K2, Kangchenjunga and the Himalayas--in 297 lots. The collection is being sold by the Appalachian Mountain Club to directly benefit the Appalachian Mountain Club Trails Protection Fund, Conservation Research and Climate Action, and the Modernization and Preservation of the AMC Library and Archives.

Lot 2170



Broad Peak at Sunset 1909

Starting bid: $1,500

Vittorio Sella (1859-1943) began serious mountain climbing and photography when he was a teenager mastering the wet plate technique and making panoramas by 1880. By 1879 he began to use dry plates and in 1880 began a series of winter views in the Alps. Every holiday, summer and winter, Sella was in the nearby mountains, often carrying an old photographic apparatus that had belonged to his father. Vittorio Sella’s father had written the first article on photography in Italian and his uncle was a founder of the Italian Mountain Club. Sella’s family was from Biella, in the Piedmont region of Northern Italy and had been textile manufacturers and businessmen for a few centuries before Sella was born.

As Yosemite was the playground for Ansel Adams, the Alps were Sella’s playground, with the difference that Sella became one of the leading mountain climbers of his generation. So while Ansel stuck to the lowlands Sella soared to the tops of the tallest mountains in the world, giving him a photographic perspective that was thoroughly modern and abstract. When Ansel was still in knickers Sella, who was familiar with all the writing about art photography from P.H. Emerson to Stieglitz, had mastered all the modern photography methods that Ansel would write about for most of his lifetime.

Lot 2233


Women of Latal Caucasus

Starting bid: $2,000

By the time Sella was 20 he had become an accomplished wet plate collodion photographer and had begun multi-plate making panoramic views--these being some of the most significant photographs made in the History of Photography in the late 19th and early 20th Century.

Lot 2185



Starting bid: $1,500

During his lifetime Vittorio Sella was celebrated for the photographs he exhibited from his daring expeditions. According to one reviewer, his annual exhibition of mountain photographs at the Alpine Club in London was "inconveniently crowded." Sella sold his prints to people from Italy, France, Germany, and England, and was represented by a London dealer named Spooner. His photographs satisfied a growing public hunger to know more about distant places on the earth that few would ever see first-hand, while providing a satisfying blend of artistic, scientific, intellectual, and even spiritual elements. Sella's primary goal was to provide the empirical evidence of what he and his party had seen on their expeditions, and to convey reality as it was perceived by the human eye. His approach was governed by rigorous technical and aesthetic standards that he called "la realta severe" - severe reality.  

Lot 2186


Ice Pyramids 1909

Starting bid: $1,500

His hard-edged sheer black and white modernist gelatin silver prints made of the Karakoram region of the Himalayas in 1909, in terms of modern landscape, were only equaled by Edward Weston and Ansel Adams in the late 1920-1940s. As with all great photographers the art is in the piece of paper and Sella’s photographic technic and papers were unsurpassed, rich and modern, unlike American papers that tended to be dull and light. 

Lot 2165


Game of Polo Parkutta & Srinigar 1909

Starting bid: $1,500

Lot 2174


Bride Peak & Godwin-Austen Glacier 1909

Starting bid: $2,000

K2 and the Karakoram 1909

In 1909, as Sella was approaching his fiftieth birthday, he and his long-time climbing friend the Duke of the Abruzzi, Luigi Amedeo di Savoia, embarked on their most ambitious journey yet, to climb K2 in the Western Himalaya Karakoram range, and to satisfy the Duke's primary intention to set a new high-altitude climbing record. In Tibetan, the name Karakoram means "black gravel," and to reach it meant crossing the vast mountainous region between Kashmir and Chinese Turkestan, a complex system of ranges, immense tablelands, intricate valleys, and mighty rivers.  (The Duke's goal was to see how high a man could climb and he wanted Sella to chronicle his increasingly bold explorations for future generations.) On K2, the second highest peak in the world, they reached 19,685 feet on the Southeast Ridge, now known as the Abruzzi Ridge. They were only the second team to attempt climbing K2 and although they were unsuccessful the Duke set a world record by climbing to 24,600 feet on Chogolisa (Bride Peak). Sella was the first person to photograph the region's mountain ranges, glaciers, and tropical forests. From Darjeeling they trekked through Kashmir, Dras River Valley, the Indus Valley, Parkutta, the Pumah River and then concentrated on the Baltoro Glacier and K2 area. Subjects included: Mt. Pajui, Mashurbrum, Gasherbrum I - IV, Staircase Peak, Bride Peak, Godwin-Austin Glacier, Mitre Peak, and Mustagh Tower.

Lot 2164


Abruzzi's Camp at Tolti 1909

Starting bid: $800

Lot 2181


KARAKORAM The Upper Baltoro Glacier

Starting bid: $2,000

Lot 2171


PANAROMA K2 & Staircase Peak

from Windy Gap 1909

Starting bid: $6,000


Kangchenjunga Himalayas 1899

In September and October 1899 he joined legendary climber Douglas Freshfield on a tour to finish mapping the Himalayan Kangchenjunga area, third highest peak in the world in the area of India Sikkim, Nepal, Bhuton, Tibet and China. Inclement weather prevented any serious high ascents but Sella found much to photograph including wonderful fauna, Hortensias, Delphiniums, Getians, Leontopodium alpinium, and Rhodendrons, Forests in Zemu Valley,Tumlong, Lachen, Srinagar, Siniolchu,Lungma Valley, Johnsong La and Peak, Jongri, Pandim, Guicha La, Praig Chu, Kabru, and Darjeeling.

The work was published in Round Kangchenjuinga, a Narrative of Mountain Travel and Exploration, 1903, by Douglas Freshfield. 

Lot 2190


HIMALAYAS Kangchenjunga

& Pandim 1899

Starting bid: $1,000

Lot 2193


3 VIEWS HIMALAYAS Lowland Flowers 1899

Starting bid: $400

Lot 2204


HIMALAYAS Kangchenjunga from Johnsong La

Starting bid: $800

Lot 2208


HIMALAYAS Jannu & Glacier 1899 spectacular

Starting bid: $800

Lot 2215



Kangchenjunga at Sunset 1899 

Starting bid: $1,000


Mt. Saint Elias border of Alaska and Yukon 1897

In 1897 on his first royal expedition with the Duke of the Abruzzi, Sella went to the American Canadian, Alaskan Yukon border to Mt. Saint Elias. Here subjects included Newton Valley, Newton Glacier, Malaspina Glacier (where the Duke abandoned his brass bed), Chaix Hills, Mt. Newton, Matasona, Augusta, Corwin Cliffs, Agassiz Glacier, Samovar Hills, Cascade Glacier, Mt. Cook and Hitchcock Range.

Lot 2226



from Newton Glacier 1897

Starting bid: $800

Lot 2231



MT ST. ELIAS RANGE Alaska 1897

Starting bid: $4,000

The European Union Alps 

Prints in the collection from negatives made between 1879-1893

Sella became famous among climbing fraternities as far away as London for his 1882 winter crossing of the Matterhorn when he ascended on one side and descended another. The speed of his campaigns was astonishing. In 1887 between July 29 and August 11 he climbed the Weisshorn twice, the Mettelhorn, Mittelgabelhorn, Alphubel, Rimpfischhorn, Dent Blanche, and the Dufourspitze of Monte Rosa.

Lot 2017


3 print PANORAMA Les Rouies Dauphine

Starting bid: $2,000


Lot 2024


Three Beautiful Prints French Alps Peaks Pelvoux Les

Starting bid: $600

Lot 2114



Starting bid: $1,000

Sella photographed and climbed extensively in the European Union Alps, Italy, France and Switzerland.

In 1893 Elizabeth Denio, an AMC member, wrote about this in a Club Report: "The notable events of the year in the Department of Art have been the exhibition of the Sella Collection of Alpine and Caucasian photographs, and the purchase of the same by subscription for the Club. Without doubt this collection, numbering some five hundred subjects, is one of the largest and finest ever seen in America. They differ from most mountain photographs in being largely taken from extremely high points, and in this, as in their superb technique, testify to Mr. Sella's skill both as a mountaineer and as a photographer. Several form panoramas: others are details of the upper portions of high mountains; and all combine to present a marvelous world of snow and ice, of crag and crevasse, of regions lonely, vast, and most fascinating. Old travelers quite familiar with the Alps thrill again as they see these pictures, and recall experiences in the Matterhorn, Mont Blanc, or Mont Rosa; all behold a hitherto unknown world of sublimity and beauty in the Caucasian mountains, while delighting in the infinite gradations of color, the magnificent cloud effects, the marvels of rock-structure in these perfect reproductions of Nature." 

Lot 2036


Three Prints

Dent du Geant Mont Blanc Swiss Alps

Starting bid: $400

Lot 2039


Three Prints Orny Glacier Mont Blanc Massif

Starting bid: $800

Lot 2133


Two views

Sublime Hut on Hohthurli Sunset & Peaks

Starting bid: $800

There are prints from the Gran Paradiso or Grand Paradis region in the Graian Alps and the Aosta Valley of Italy, and the Pennine Alps straddling the border of Italy, France and Switzerland as well as the Swiss Oberland, the Bernese Alps, the Bernina Range and Lombardy region in the Italian Alps.

Lot 2058


Three views of

Matterhorn 1880s

Starting bid: $600

Lot 2060


Two views


Starting bid: $500

Lot 2062


MATTERHORN, Dent D'Herens & Glacier Flow

Starting bid: $800

Lot 2066


Two views

Peaks & Glaciers Matterhorn

Starting bid: $800

His groundbreaking works of art from the Alps, the Caucasus, Africa, Alaska, and the Himalayas influenced Victorian aesthetics, and furthered scientific studies in the fields of anthropology, cartography, meteorology, and botany, and currently are used extensively in studies of glacial retreat. 

Lot 2234



Southern Valleys 1889

Starting bid: $1,000

Lot 2263



Russian Mtns Alaniya Park area

Starting bid: $3,500

Caucasus 1889 and 1890

Highest peaks in Europe and Russia

In 1889 and 1890 Sella made two of his three expeditions to the Caucasus on the European Asian border. Mt. Elbrus is the highest mountain in Europe and in Russia. The area photographed includes Russia, Georgia, Azerbaijan and Armenia and in his time included North and South Ossetia, Dagastan, and Sochi. Here he made a series of spectacular single and group portraits and street scenes in a few of these remote European towns.

Lot 2235


Glorious Family Portrait: Women and Children of Latal

Starting bid: $1,000

Lot 2276


Bezengi Citizens at Festival

Starting bid: $2,000

Lot 2283


4 PANEL Panorama Ushba Shkara Russia

Starting bid: $2,500

The AMC exhibited Sella’s 1893 prints in nearly 100 venues in New England and across America in the 1890s and early 1900s. Many of the prints in the auction were banged up and scratched (and are offered here at bargain prices) as the prints traveled. The AMC Sella committee had a conversation similar to many museums today: is it better to show the work and risk damage to the prints so people can appreciate and learn about it or is it better to keep it stored so only the few researchers can view the prints? The AMC struck a middle ground, storing some prints and continuing to monitor damage to prints as they were exhibited. Mounts were replaced under the instructions of Sella as they were often damaged. The work from Alaska, the Himalayas and Africa were rarely exhibited and are in wonderful condition.

Rwenzori Africa 1906 Headwaters of the Nile

In 1901 Henry Stanley spoke before the Royal Geographical Society of London and uttered a wish that some future daring explorer would climb these lofty mountains. Inspired by this, the Duke of the Abruzzi led an expedition to climb the unclimbed mounts of the Rwenzori, the headwaters of the Nile, straddling the border of Uganda and the Democratic Republic of Congo. Sella joined this group to help with photography and telemapping. Subjects photographed include the flora and fauna, the valleys and glaciers. Giant Lobelia growing in the Heath forests were part of Sella’s wider view of the environment as were the local inhabitants. The Mobuku River, the Bujuku Valley, lead to the higher mountains Mt. Stanley, Mt. Baker, Mt. Savoia, Alexandra Peak, Margherita Peak, King Edward Peak, Mt. Speke, Johnson Peak, Victor Emmanuel II Peak are seen in the Sella photographs at this auction. The glaciers Sella photographed have all melted and Sella’s photographs have been used in glacial studies and climate change since the 1950s.

Lot 2005


3 VIEWS Bujuku & Mobuku Valleys, large fauna

Starting bid: $600

Lot 2012



the Rwenzori 1906

Starting bid: $900

Lists of subjects Sella photographed in the Alps and Caucasus:

There are prints from the Gran Paradiso or Grand Paradis region in the Graian Alps and the Aosta Valley of Italy, and the Pennine Alps along straddling the border of Italy and Switzerland subjects include: Grand Combin, Grivol, Val Savaranche, Monte Viso, Levanna, Ciamarella, Becca di Carforan, Ormelune, Aiguille Rousse, Aiguille di Midi, Aiguille Blanche de Peuterat, Mont Blanc, Grandes Jorasses, Miage Glacier, Mont Blanc du Tacul, Mont Maudit, Dome du Gouter, Aiguilles Vertes, Dent du Geant, Dome de Rochefort, Le Portelet, Saleynaz Glacier, Orny Glacier, Aiguilles Dorees, Aiguilles du Tour, and Aiguille Verte.

Other views in the Pennine Alps of France Italy and Switzerland include: Mont Blanc, the Matterhorn, Ferpecle Glacier, Tete Blanche, Dents de Bertol, Mount Dolin, Aiguille de la Za, Des Bouquetins, Mont Colon, Evolena Valley, Dent D’Herens, Bec de Luseney, Jumeaux de Val Tournanche, Valsorey Glacier, Mont Velan, Mont Dolent, Dent du Midi, Aiguilles des Maisons Blanches, Orny hut, Grivola, Bagne Valley, Val Ferret, Grand Combin, Petit Combin, Corbassiere Glacier, seracs, Tiefenmatten Glacier, Breithorn, Lyskamm, Michalbelhorner, Monte Rosa, and Dente Blanche. Other subjects in this area are: Penhall Coloir, Gabelhorn, Garner Glacier, Ober-Thiodul Glacier, Rothhorn, Weisshorn, Col des Grandes Murailles, Riffelhorn, Schailhorn, Grand Cornier, Tiefenmatten Glacier, Mettelhorn, Alphubel, Schllenberg Glacier, and Rimpfischhorn.

In the Swiss Oberland, the Bernese Alps are views of: Mittel Gabelhorn, Wellenkuppe, Dent Blanche, Lys Glacier, Zumsteinpitze, Signalkuppe, Parrotspitze, Dufourspitse, Nordend, Verra Glacier, Castor, Pollux, Riffel, Zermatt, Grand Tournalon, Cervin, petit Cervin, Strahlhorn, Cima de Jazzi, Fallerhorn, Vincent Pyramide, Pisse Glacier, Vigne Glacier, Corno, Indren Glacier, Untere Tasch, St. Niklaus, Randa, Simplon Pass, Aletschhorn, Gross Grunhorn, Aletsch Glacier, Eggischhorn, Marjalen Lake, Fletchhorn, Wildstrubel, Petersgrat, Grunhornli, Battenhorn, Dreieckhorn, Kamm, Walliser Flescherhorner, Jungfrau, Schreckhorn, Kandersteg, Eschinen Lake, Finsteraarhorn, Eiger, Wetterhorn, Blumisalphorn, Monch, Doldenhorn, Frundelorn, and Wilde Frau.

In the Bernina Range, Lombardy region of the Italian Alps, Sellla’s photographic subjects included: Monte Della Disgrazia, Fellaria Glacier, Lazanda, Pizzi di Palu, Piz Bellavista, Fex Valley, Piz roseg, Scercsen, Piz Bernina, Cresta Agiuzza, Piz Zupo, Pizo De Verona, Piz Gluschaint, Piz Tremoggia, Thurwiesser Spitze, Ortler, Mont Zebru, Konigsspitze, Manzina Lake, Monte Vioz, Care Alto, Monte Fealletto, Monte Furmo, Adamello, Corno Bianco, madrone Glacier, Valteline, Crozzon de Brenta, Malga Brenta-Bassa, Tyrols, Dolomites, Torre di Brenta, Tosa Hut, Pala di San Martino, Rosetta, Sas Maor, Cimon Della Pala, San Martino di Castrozza, Canazei, Vernier, Vernal.

He also photographed Mt. Etna in Sicily.

In 1889 and 1890 Sella made two of his three expeditions to the Caucasus on the European Asian border Mt. Elbrus is the highest mountain in Europe in Georgia and in Russia. The area photographed includes Russia, Georgia, Azerbaijan and Armenia and in his time included North and South Ossetia, Dagastan, and Sochi. Here he made a series of spectacular single and group portraits and street scenes in a few of these remote European towns. Sella’s subjects here include: Exeri, Gebi, Ghebi, Svaneti, Mestia, Mujal, Muzhali, Mazeri, Latel, Mount Choda, Zeskua, Ushba, Mt. Elbrus, Babis Mta, also known as Donguzorun, Terskol Valley and Glacier, Bezengi, Koshtan-tau, Dykhtau, Katyn-tau, Shkhara, Tetnuldi, Chegem, the Alaniya National Park, Urukh River, Karuaugom Glacier, Racha, Lechkhumi, Adish, Gistola, Leila, and Gvalda Glacier.

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19th Century Photography of the West

British Photography 1840 - 1865

From 2000 to present.  

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Vittorio Sella • In the Everest Range of the Himalayan Sikkim region, 1899, The Circumnavigation of Kangchinjinga (Kangchenjunga), Third highest Peak in the world
Vittorio Sella • Caucasus 1889, 1890, 1896
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Glen Canyon, In Wildness, and Certain Passages
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November 17, 2018– January 2, 2019
Vittorio Sella • Severe Reality - K2 and the Himalayan Karakoram
July 27- September 1, 2018

Southwest Landscape, History and Architecture: Classic Views 1874-1954
Summer 2017
Broken Treaties
December 2, 2016 - January 5, 2017
Barbara Van Cleve - Pure Quill
November 18, 2016 - January 14, 2017
Flor Garduño - Natural Elements
July 22 - October 25, 2016
Joan Myers • Fire and Ice
April 25 - May 30, 2015
Grabill Eliot Porter • Portfolios
Joel-Peter Witkin • Love and other Reasons...To Love
April 18 - July 15, 2014
Grabill Ansel Adams • On Closer Inspection
From the David H. Arrington Collection of Ansel Adams
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Ansel Adams Ansel Adams • Gems of New Mexico
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Ansel Adams
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January 31 - April 26, 2014

At the Andrew Smith Gallery, Inc - ANNEX
203 West San Francisco St., Santa Fe, NM
Santa Fe Paul Caponigro • Old and New
February 22 - April 14, 2014
Santa Fe Lee Friedlander • Mannequin
October 4, 2013 - January 5, 2014
Grabill Ray Metzker • Shadow Catcher
June 28, 2013 - September 30, 2013
Spagnoli Annie Leibovitz • Classics 1980 - 2001
Spring 2013
Spagnoli Joan Myers • Jungle at the Door
Fall 2012
Spagnoli Zig Jackson • Native Veterans
August 10 - August 31, 2012
Spagnoli Jerry Spagnoli • Recent Daguerreotypes
July 20 - August 10, 2012
Santa Fe Miguel Gandert
Saints and Sinners: Rituals of Penance and Redemption
May 25 - July 30, 2012

Beauty and Death in the Antarctic

Celebrating the 100th Anniversary of Robert Falcon Scott’s successful and doomed expedition to the South Pole. Photographs by Herbert Ponting, Joan Myers and Frank Hurley.

November 25, 2011 - January 31, 2012


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Section One 1858 - 1875
Section Two 1875 - 1920
Edward S. Curtis
Adam C. Vroman
William Henry Jackson

Larry McNeil Larry McNeil
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Photographs by David Micael Kennedy, Lisa Law, Baron Wolman and Guy Cross
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December 12, 2009 - January 15, 2010
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October 2, 2009 - November 14, 2009

Paul Caponigro • Aluminum Series and Vintage Classics
Spring and Summer 2009

Lee Friedlander • New Mexico
October 31, 2008 - January 15, 2009

Joan Myers • Brimstone
June 27- September 10, 2008

Shelley Niro • Hiawatha's Belt and Other Visions
July 11- August 31, 2008

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Laura Gilpin • Masterworks
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December 15 - January 15, 2007

Elliott Erwitt • Six Decades
October 13 - November 20, 2006

Sandra Russell Clark • Cut Adrift
September 16 - October 2, 2006

Victor Masayesva • Drought
August 18 - September 25, 2006

Bill Wittliff • A Selection: Lonesome Dove and La Vida Brinca
July 14 - August 14, 2006

Patrick Nagatani • Chromatherapy
March 10 - April 30, 2006

Jack Spencer • This Land
November 25, 2005 - January 15, 2006

Jerry Uelsmann • Other Realities
November 11, 2005 - January 15, 2006

Lee Friedlander • Sticks and Stones
July 8 - September 12, 2005

Annie Leibovitz • American Music
October 22, 2004 - January 15, 2005

Jack Spencer • Aparicioñes
March 12 - April 12, 2004


Joan Myers • Wondrous Cold: An Antarctic Journey
November 28, 2003 - January 15, 2004

Herman Leonard • Jazz Classics
October 3 - November 15, 2003

Hulleah J. Tsinhnahjinnie • Portraits Against Amnesia
August 22 - September 20, 2003


Flor Garduno • Inner Light
July 11 - August 10, 2003


Paul Caponigro • Fifty Years of Photography
March 14 - May 5, 2003


Ansel Adams • Monumental Classical Photographs
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August Sander • Portraits from the Twentieth Century

Baron Wolman • Forever Young
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Danny Lyon • Indian Nations
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Josef Sudek • Still Lifes
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July 5 - August 7, 2002


Jerry Uelsmann • Masterwork
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Lee Friedlander • Face to Face
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Phil Borges • Indigenous People - Landscapes of the Soul
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A Rare Collection Of Platinum Print Photographs

Patrick Nagatani • Excavations
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Annie Leibovitz • Nudes
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Miguel Gandert • Indo-Hispano Rituals
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James Balog • Animals on the Border
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Paul Caponigro • Cornucopia
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