& I went to see the Ansel Adams exhibition at the MFA. We ran into tcb
there. I had heard that it was a very large collection, and featured lots of rarely seen prints. I've never been that fond of the most commonly seen Adams prints, such as the classic shot of El Capitan in Yosemite; while technically superb, his photos of that sort of scene just can't capture the actual scene. Having been to Yosemite, and stared at El Cap in the flesh, the photo just has no chance of comparing, no matter how technically brilliant the photographer is. It's sort of like capturing a Cirque du Soleil show on DVD; you just can't do it. It's against the laws of nature. So i was interested in seeing much of his other work besides the classic sweeping landscapes.
Pros: It is a very large exhibit, large enough to show a lot of the other subject matter that Adams also photographed. Hey! He did portrait photography! And cityscape photos, some found object abstracts, and other things. There's a photo he snapped using someone elses 35mm camera, rather than his usual large format boxes, of a group of small kids in a depression-era shack that is just a stunning image.
Cons: We had tickets for the 2:30 entry. It was very crowded. They are trying to pack as many folk through there as possible. This didn't actually affect our ability to view things, though it did slow it down a lot. The exhibit hall is painted a dull grey and the air conditioning could not in any way keep up with the amount of heat the crowd was producing. This led to the rather odd experience of viewing grand sweeping landscape shots while confined in a stifling grey box filled with teeming masses. If the exhibition was at the ICA i would have assumed it was on purpose; at the MFA it was merely unfortunate.
That said, it was worth going to, and overall i enjoyed it.