In 1988, the CCA began a large photographic commission to photograph the present state of the parks, private estates, subdivisions and cemeteries designed by Frederick Law Olmsted (1822–1903), North America’s most important landscape architect. Photographers Robert Burley, Lee Friedlander and Geoffrey James spent seven years visiting and revisiting Olmsted’s landscapes—from the best known, such as Central Park in New York City and Boston’s Emerald Necklace, to the lesser known, such as Lake Park in Milwaukee and Mount Royal in Montreal. The object was to investigate the place of these parks in the contemporary city, examining them photographically from many different viewpoints and in many seasons. Viewing Olmsted presents a selection of the complex archive of 936 photographs that was formed at the CCA from this commission.
Prologue by Phyllis Lambert. Essays by Paolo Costantini and John Szarkowski. Interviews with the photographers by David Harris.
Softcover, 119 pages. Published in English and in French editions. Co-published with the MIT Press.