The Place We Live, A Retrospective Selection of Photographs, 1964–2009


Robert Adams

With essays by Jock Reynolds, Joshua Chuang, Tod Papageorge, and John Szarkowski

Photographer Robert Adams (born 1937) is widely regarded as one of the most significant and influential chroniclers of the American West, renowned for his austere views of a landscape profoundly changed by human development. This stunning three-volume set—printed with an unprecedented fidelity to the photographer’s master prints—accompanies a major traveling exhibition and is the first publication to comprehensively survey Adams’s 45-year career.

Presenting an epic sequence of nearly 400 tritone plates, Robert Adams: The Place We Live features selections from all of Adams’s major projects, including his seminal work in the suburbs of Colorado Springs and Denver and his most recent, elegiac portrayals of trees in the Pacific Northwest. Also included is an anthology of texts by the photographer, a series of critical essays on Adams’s life and work, and an illustrated bibliography and chronology that will shed new light on one of the central American artists of our time.


… an ambitious multibook look at Mr. Adams’s career. —Dana Jennings, New York Times

… a broad, inclusive look at Adams’ career, fully revealing him as one of America’s most important photographers. —Tyler Green, Modern Art Notes, ArtInfo

Exquisite … a lasting testament to an extraordinary life’s work. —Michael Mack, TIME (Best Photobooks of 2011)

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… . I personally would have felt a lot better about the state of artistic culture in the 1970s and 1980s had I been aware of Adams’s example. —Michael Fried, Bookforum

[Adams is] a quiet giant in the photography world… . Serially and simultaneously, his pictures convey the glorious and the banal, invoking reverence, shame, and wonder. —Leah Ollman, Art in America