DescriptionAnsel Adams' Arca-Swiss 4x5 View Camera Outfit used from 1964 to 1968
Comprising a 4x5 Arca-Swiss monorail camera, extra bag bellows, a Wollensak Raptar 13in. f/6.8 lens No. 971865 in Alphax shutter, a Ross Express 5in. f/4 lens No. 153041 in Ilex No.4 Acme Synchro shutter, a Kodak Ektar 203mm f/7.7 lens No. RE262 in Flash Supermatic Shutter, compendium lens hood, two Graflex graphic film pack adapters, Tiffen step up rings, Kodak Series VII to VIII step up ring, Kodak Series VII step-up ring 1 7/8" to 47.5 mm, Wratten gelatin filters, Kodak No. 12 VIII glass filter, and dark cloth all in original fitted carrying and shipping case. Together with a Majestic tripod and shutter speed test documentation.
Ansel Adams, Liliane de Cock and the Morgan Family
At the age of 21 in 1960 Liliane de Cock set sail for American leaving behind a life in post-war Belgium
of food shortages, family turmoil and a series of stepmothers. On the ship she met Brett Weston who
was traveling on a Guggenheim Fellowship. They became life-long friends and at the suggestion of
Weston she moved to California a year later. He introduced her to Ansel Adams and Adams gave her
a temporary job spotting prints for his Portfolio IV. After finishing the 3,900 prints she stayed on as his
full-time assistant from 1963 to 1972 and lived in Carmel California near Adams.
She learnt the art of photography as an apprentice and during her vacations traveling alone through
rural America. The Joseph Bellows Gallery describes her work as such: "Under the guidance of Ansel
Adams and with a 4 x 5 inch camera lent to her by the artist, Morgan began photographing the
landscape and soon developed a unique vision and printing style which utilizes the full tonal scale of
the medium with a strong attention to the melancholic values."
Sometime around 1964 Adams acquired an Arca-Swiss 4x5 view camera and reference is made to
this camera in his The Making of 40 Photographs on page 107 when Adams discusses how he made
the well-known image of Arches, North Court, Mission San Xavier del Bac. He says, "I have many
negatives of this portion of the mission . . . the one I consider most successful was accomplished in
1968 with a 4 x 5 Arca-Swiss view camera."
In 1968 Ansel Adams gave Liliane de Cock the Arca-Swiss view camera and she continued to use
it throughout her career. In the monograph Liliane De Cock Photographs Ansel Adams said of her
photography "De Cock presents to us a personal, private world. It is a world of individualistic beauty
and intensity. She communicates to all who will respond; she relates to no particular pattern of concept
or execution. Hers is fine photography-and what more can one say?"
Liliane de Cock met Douglas O. Morgan at a workshop in Yosemite Valley and they were married
in 1972, at a ceremony performed in Ansel Adams' home. Doulas O. Morgan was the son of famed
photographer Barbara Morgan and photography publisher, curator and Leica pioneer Willard D. Morgan.
This camera comes directly from the De Cock/Morgan family and is the only Ansel Adams view camera to come up for auction.
Condition report available upon request.
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