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Lewis Baltz

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Lewis Baltz

American, (1945–2014)
Lewis Baltz was an American photographer best known for his involvement in the seminal “New Topographics: Photographs of a Man-Altered Landscape” exhibition of 1975. Like his contemporaries Robert Adams, Stephen Shore, and Bernd and Hilla Becher, Baltz focused his camera on the unassuming green spaces and architecture of tract housing, office parking lots, and industrial parks. “I was living in Monterey, a place where the classic photographers—the Westons, Wynn Bullock, and Ansel Adams—came for a privileged view of nature,” he once said of his work. “But my daily life very rarely took me to Point Lobos or Yosemite; it took me to shopping centers, and gas stations and all the other unhealthy growth that flourished beside the highway. It was a landscape that no one else had much interest in looking at.” Born on September 12, 1945 in Newport Beach, CA, he went on to study at the San Francisco Art Institute before receiving his MFA from Claremont Graduate University. In the late 1980’s, Baltz switched from modestly scaled black-and-white photos to large-scale color prints, in order to capture the massive hermetic spaces of hi-tech and government research facilities in France and Japan. Baltz died on November 22, 2014 in Paris, France.

Artist Objects

Maryland 1996.15.1

Untitled 1996.15.2

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