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August 18, 2011

Groundbreaking Catalogue of All Known Mammoth Photographs by Carleton Watkins Includes 1000 Images Published for the First Time

"The prodigious amount of new information and insight offered by Carleton Watkins: The Complete Mammoth Photographs will make it an indispensable resource for the field, as well as those interested in the visual culture of the West." —Douglas R. Nickel, Andrea V. Rosenthal Professor of Modern Art, Brown University


Melissa Crowley
Getty Publications
(310) 440-6795

LOS ANGELES—The extraordinary body of work produced by photographer Carleton Watkins (1829–1916) between 1858 and 1891 constitutes one of the longest and most productive careers in nineteenth-century American photography. Carleton Watkins: The Complete Mammoth Photographs (Getty Publications, $195.00, hardcover) reproduces the images from the nearly thirteen hundred “mammoth” (18 x 22 inch) glass-plate negatives he produced, the majority of which exist in only one surviving print. Of these, fewer than three hundred have been previously reproduced or exhibited

Drawing on the major collections of Watkins prints at the J. Paul Getty Museum, the Bancroft Library at the University of California, Berkeley, the Huntington Library in San Marino, California, and numerous smaller collections, the authors have assembled and catalogued all of Watkins’s known mammoth-plate photographs. These include views of Yosemite, San Francisco, and the Pacific Coast, as well as railroads, mines, and lumber mills throughout the west. The work will contribute not only to a fuller understanding of this pioneering photographer but also portray the barely explored frontier in its final moments of pristine beauty. The catalogue is organized by region and includes an inventory of Watkins’s negatives and an illustrated guide to his signatures, both of value to scholars, collectors, and dealers.

About the Authors: Weston Naef is curator emeritus in the Department of Photographs at the J. Paul Getty Museum. Christine Hult-Lewis is an independent scholar based in San Francisco.

Publication Information:

Carleton Watkins
The Complete Mammoth Photographs
Weston Naef and Christine Hult-Lewis
J. Paul Getty Museum
608 pages, 9 ¾ x 12 1/2 inches, hardcover
1,351 duotone illustrations
ISBN 978-1-60606-005-6, $195.00 [UK £125.00]

Publication Date:  November 15, 2011


Kindly send two tearsheets of your review when published to Melissa Crowley, Getty Publications, 1200 Getty Center Drive, Suite 500, Los Angeles, CA  90049-1682.

Available at bookstores or through Getty Publications (800-223-3431). Distributed to the trade in the U.S. and Canada by the University of Chicago Press and in the U.K. and Europe by Orca Book Services.

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