View Down the Valley, Yosemite
Carleton Watkins was one of the most highly acclaimed photographers to survey the American West in the 1860s. This sweeping view of the Yosemite Valley conveys the awe-inspiring grandeur of the Western landscape that drew so many travelers and entrepreneurs.
Watkins anchored the composition by flanking the tree-lined valley floor with the iconic landmarks of Cathedral Rocks and El Capitan rising on either side. In the foreground, the glassy Merced River conveys the stillness of a seemingly untouched wilderness.