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HomeContents > People > Photographers > Clark Blickensderfer

Dates:  1882, 17 September - 1962, 12 January
Born:  US, CO, Denver
Died:  US, CO, Denver
 
  

Preparing biographies

Approved biography for Clark Blickensderfer
(Courtesy of Christian Peterson)

 
  
Clark Blickensderfer was born on September 17, 1882, in Denver. He earned a degree in civil engineering from Columbia University in New York and then returned to Denver to manage his father’s real estate holdings. Blickensderfer began using the camera as a utilitarian tool in the early 1910s, making photographic records of his frequent excursions into Colorado’s Rocky Mountain National Park. Appropriately, his first published photograph appeared in a 1915 mountaineering annual.
 
Blickensderfer’s pictorial activity was limited primarily to the 1920s. In 1923 he was a founding member and first president of the Denver Camera Club. He served as a regional vice-president for the New York-based Pictorial Photographers of America, whose annual included his work. His photographs also were reproduced in American Photography and Photograms of the Year, and he wrote a short article for the May 1924 issue of Camera Craft, about the making of a specific photograph.
 
In 1924, Blickensderfer began exhibiting his work in pictorial salons. Over the next half-dozen years, his photographs were accepted by juries in Paris, London, Toronto, New York, Buffalo, San Francisco, and Los Angeles. During this time, he also presented one-person exhibitions at the California Camera Club (San Francisco), New York’s Art Center, the Camera Club of New York, and the Chicago Camera Club. He stopped making black-and-white prints by the end of the decade and turned his attention to large-format color transparencies. He eventually concentrated on 35mm color slides for the rest of his life.
 
Blickensderfer’s photographs reflect his great love of the outdoors. He liked to camp and photograph the splendors of the Rockies, and his keen interest in birds is evident in his ornithological photographs. In addition, he turned his camera on the architecture and lifestyle of southwestern Indians. Blickensderfer showed his work into the early 1930s, when he sent photographs to annual exhibitions of the Colorado Mountain Club, of which he was a charter member. The pictorial world, however, paid little attention to him (or vice versa), after this time. Clark Blickensderfer died on January 12, 1962, in Denver. 
  
Christian A. Peterson Pictorial Photography at the Minneapolis Institute of Arts (Christian A. Peterson: Privately printed, 2012) 
  
This biography is courtesy and copyright of Christian Peterson and is included here with permission. 
  
Date last updated: 1 June 2013. 
  
SHARED BIOGRAPHICAL INFORMATION PROJECT 
  
We welcome institutions and scholars willing to test the sharing of biographies for the benefit of the photo-history community. The biography above is a part of this trial.
 
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