Ansel Adams meets the Antiques Roadshow


It all began ten years ago when Rick Norsigian bought 2 boxes of negatives at a Fresno garage sale for $45. Art, handwriting and weather experts concluded that within these boxes of negatives were 65 plates produced by Ansel Adams; in July, an art dealer valued the negatives at $200 million. A short while later, a relative of Earl Brooks — a contemporary of Ansel Adams — claimed that the images were taken by Brooks, not Adams. Add now we can add Arthur C. Pillsbury to the list of possible creators of the Norsigian negatives.  According to the New York Times, because Yosemite was such a popular spot for photographers at this time (80 years ago), this may not be the last of the plot twists. The Ansel Adams Publishing Rights Trust, the Center for Creative Photography and the University of Arizona archive, along with a number of art and forensic experts, dispute Norsigian’s claim to own authentic Adam’s negatives. The Adams trust and Norsigian meet in federal court this week over an alleged trademark violation resulting from Norsigian’s sale of prints of the negatives.

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