Adam Bartos b. 1953 New York, New York
Most of my work has involved … some aspect of twentieth-century utopianism.
Native New Yorker Adam Bartos has been photographing since he was a teenager and creates photographs suffused with a quiet calm. He cites William Eggleston–known for his intensely colored images of ordinary scenes–and the earlier photographers Timothy O’Sullivan and Carleton Watkins–both known for their unique documents of the changing American landscape–as primary influences, Bartos focuses on the contemporary landscape. Yet, in his images, time seems to stand still, lending them an aura of temporal dislocation.
In the early 1970s he attended film school at New York University and began working with color photography. He was mentored independently by the photographer Evelyn Hofer, known for her serene and meticulous color compositions.
Bartos published perhaps his best-known work–photographs illustrating the effects of time on the modernist United Nations building in New York after fifty years of use–in the book International Territory: The United Nations, 1945-95 , 1995 . During the summers of 1991-95 he made a photographic series on middle-class Long Island vacationers called Hither Hills published in the photography magazine Double Take in 1997. In 2001 he published Kosmos: A Portrait of the Russian Space Age, photographs of the “obsolescent future” of the Soviet space program. Boulevard (2006) features images of Los Angeles and Paris.