Carnegie Art Museum presents
A Book Signing with Photographer
Robert Werling
of his new publication Beyond Light/American Landscapes
with foreword by Cole Weston (Merrell Publishers)
Saturday, May 7, 2005, 2-4pm

The event includes a Gallery Walk-Thru with Werling of the Carnegie’s current exhibit “Ambiguous Beauty: Photographs from the El Paso Museum of Art”, with works from Ansel Adams to Vik Muniz organized by the El Paso Museum of Art.  On view through May 22, 2005.

Ambiguous Beauty:  Photographs from the El Paso Museum of Art
Through May 22, 2005


(805) 385-8157/8158, fax (805) 483-3654
E-mail, <>
Web site, <>
Museum Hours:  Thursday – Saturday, 10am-5pm; & Sunday 1-5pm; closed holidays
Admission $3 / Museum members free

Robert Werling, “Beyond Light:  American Landscapes”, front cover

Robert Werling was born in San Francisco, California in 1946.  While briefly attending a commercial art school, Werling found photography to be his medium and went on to obtain Bachelor of Arts and Honorary Master of Science degrees from Brooks Institute of Photography in Santa Barbara, California.  He also studied privately under Ansel Adams from 1966 to 1970 and with Imogen Cunningham from 1969 to 1975.  It was through Cunningham’s introduction that Werling landed his “first real” job, photographing plants at every University of California campus for the Berkeley botanist, Professor Mai Arbegast.

Through Werling’s affiliation with Adams, he came to know other noted photographers.  Brett Weston, whom he began visiting in 1975 first in Carmel and later in Hawaii, became a close friend and mentor.  Marion Post Wolcott, relying on his darkroom expertise, entrusted her negatives to his printing genius.  Their friendship developed during the years Werling printed for her from 1984 until her death in 1990.

The desire to travel has been a life long lure leading to extensive California and international trips.  Beginning in 1971 after graduation from Brooks Institute, Werling boarded a freighter and spent a year living and photographing in Japan.  In 1981, he fulfilled a dream to photograph the vast land of the Alaskan Yukon.  His first trip to Europe in 1984 brought him in contact with his German heritage. In 1992 through the University of Pittsburgh he had the opportunity to teach a semester aboard ship with stops at exotic ports including, Brazil, Africa and India.  

While continuing to create fine art prints, Werling has lectured for Brooks Institute, the University of California at Santa Barbara, and the Werkschule für Fotografie in Soltau, Germany.  Werling has exhibited in over sixty one-man and group shows in the United States and Europe with award-winning work appearing in numerous publications.  He speaks fluent German and divides his time between California and Europe.  Robert Werling lives in Santa Barbara, California.

Ambiguous Beauty:  Photographs from the El Paso Museum of Art
Organized by the El Paso Museum of Art by Curator Christian Gerstheimer, this exhibit consists of thirty-nine photographs from its permanent collection by nationally important photographers such as Ansel Adams, Gay Block, Richard Misrach and Yasumasa Morimura and Southwest-based photographers, many with connections to the California art scene.

While investigating the persistence of questions about the meaning of beauty, the exhibit draws attention to three areas of reoccurring concern:  issues of identity, human intervention into the land, and aesthetics.  The earliest photographs are by Edward Curtis, respected by Theodore Roosevelt and famed for photographing with uncustomary respect every major North American Indian tribe west of the Mississippi.  Among the works of contemporary photographers, Martina Lopez' is an example of the evocative use of traditional and digital photographic methods.   Blending 19th century portraits and landscape, she creates a collective history of family images that elicit universal memories.

The photographers included in the traveling exhibit are:  Ansel Adams, Max Aguilera-Hellweg, Jaime Bailleres, Bruce Berman, Gay Block, Hugo Brehme, Karen Bucher, Dan Budnik, Julian Cardona, Manuel Carrillo, Keith Carter, Alain Gerard Clement, Carlotta Corpron, Edward Curtis, James Drake, George Drennan, Janet Ingram, George Krause, Ida Lansky, Victor La Viola, Martina Lopez, Richard Misrach, Diana Molina,Yasumasa Morimura, Vik Muniz, Nic Nicosia, Lori Nix, Sam Peters, Gloria Prieto, JB Robbins, Manuel Rosas, David Taylor, Willie Varela, Kathy Vargas, John Ward and Casey Williams.

Return to Gallery Pages