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Brett Weston

Swamp
1947
gelatin silver print
7 11/16 x 9 9/16 in.
Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of Joshua P. Smith

A committed modern photographer, Weston used his camera to transform reality into visual forms and patterns. Here, the dark forms of the nearest cedar tree trunks merge with their reflections to create a rhythmic pattern across the image. Mid-twentieth-century photographers were preoccupied with giving crisply printed natural objects a sense of abstraction. Weston succeeds as he defines space in a way that rejects ordinary perspective.