Publisher: Reaktion Books
Book Condition: New
In Yosemite, Kate Nearpass Ogden provides a comprehensive and unique scientific and cultural history of this remarkable area of natural beauty, exploring everything from its geological origins to its nineteenth-century discovery and the creation of the magnificent park that it is today. Num Pages: 208 pages. BIC Classification: 1KBBW; WN; WTH. Category: (G) General (US: Trade). Dimension: 220 x 159 x 20. Weight in Grams: 552. . 2015. Hardcover. . . . . Books ship from the US and Ireland. Bookseller Inventory # V9781780235271
Synopsis: In 1851 a small militia trekked through California?s Sierra Nevada Mountains and discovered a site so spectacular that, over the succeeding century and a half, millions of others would follow to gaze upon its splendor: Yosemite. Publishing in time for the 125th anniversary of Yosemite National Park, Kate Nearpass Ogden?s Yosemite offers a comprehensive look at both the scientific and cultural history of this remarkable place, exploring everything from its geological origins to the political will it took to preserve it.
Known for its unusual and dramatic rock formations, breathtaking vistas, and treasure trove of waterfalls, Yosemite receives nearly four million visitors a year. Scanning over these crowds, Ogden soon leaves them to walk through Yosemite?s history, back to its original name, ?Ahwahnee??given by its Miwok inhabitants?and the tragic irony behind what we call it now, which early Anglo-American visitors mistook as the Miwok appellation, but which some scholars now suggest in fact means ?there are killers among them.? Visiting with famed stewards such as John Muir, and lesser-known ones such as James Mason Hutchings and Galen Rowell, she recounts the valley?s discovery by westerners, exploration, exploitation, and its eventual preservation as one of the first National Parks. Ogden also looks at the many artworks it has inspired and the larger hold it has had on the imagination and our dreams of the unspoiled American west.
Rich in detail and beautifully illustrated with everything from landscape photography to paintings inspired by its beauties, this book is a must read for anyone who has ever stepped into this incomparable valley?or anyone who has wanted to.
From the Inside Flap:
"For Americans of the nineteenth century, Yosemite, like Niagara Falls, offered a defining natural symbol of American possibilities. Here, in image and text, is the record of how the painters and photographers of that era-poised on California peaks in silent awe-celebrated the Yosemite as place and icon."—Kevin Starr, Professor of History, University of Southern California
“For 150 years Yosemite Valley has captured the American imagination through literary description, the photographer?s lens, and the artist?s palate. Yosemite: Art of an American Icon is a wonderful, multilayered cultural history of a spectacular American landscape. This is a story of the beauty of Nature melded with human perceptions, which tells us much about ourselves as well as the ‘incomparable valley.? It is a spectacular, entertaining read.?—Robert Righter, author of The Battle over Hetch Hetchy
"Tracing the dynamic interconnections between art, nature, and commerce that transformed Yosemite into one of the most powerful and popular icons of wilderness in American culture, Yosemite: Art of an American Icon is a one-of-a-kind volume that graphically probes and exposes our ambivalent cultural love affair with pristine wilderness. Not only does it provide a nuanced and comprehensive survey of the art of Yosemite, but it also encourages us to critically examine our contradictory desire for Yosemite to be both untouched natural preserve and sought-after tourist destination."—Marguerite S. Shaffer, Director of American Studies, Associate Professor of American Studies and History, Miami University, Oxford Ohio
“As Amy Scott puts it in her introduction: “In Yosemite, visitors encounter nature but see a work of art.? For us to see nature it must be turned into a landscape, a work of art, but always then what we see is the work of art. It is this paradox that the book so skillfully elucidates, in a major contribution that places the visual creation of Yosemite at the heart of western studies, American art, and the role of wilderness in modern urban society. Scott and her colleagues do a magnificent job of capturing Yosemite?s significance and its hard realities and complexities, synthesizing current research on the development of Yosemite, and extending that research in many fruitful directions. And the book is beautifully written and illustrated.?—Bruce Robertson, University of California, Santa Barbara, and Consulting Curator, Los Angeles County Museum of Art
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