Timothy H. O'Sullivan: The King Survey Photographs (Hardcover)

Before placing an order, please note:

  • You'll receive a confirmation email once your order is complete and ready for pickup. 
  • If you have a membership, please make a note of this in the order comments and we'll apply your discount.
  • Online orders are nonrefundable and cannot be exchanged.
  • If you place a pre-order to be shipped in the same order as currently available titles, an additional shipping fee will be added to your order.  
  • Women & Children First is not responsible for lost or stolen packages.
Timothy H. O'Sullivan: The King Survey Photographs By Keith F. Davis, Jane L. Aspinwall Cover Image


Clarence King's Survey, undertaken between 1867 and 1872, covered a vast swath of terrain, from the border of California eastward to the edge of the Great Plains. It was the first survey to include a full-time photographer—Timothy O'Sullivan—who produced about 450 finished photographs in large-format and smaller-format stereographs. O'Sullivan's images convey a distinct individual quality of perception, at once direct and laconic, as well as a perfect union of objective fact and personal interpretation. As such, O'Sullivan remains the most admired, studied, and debated photographer who worked on the great western surveys of the 19th century.

This handsome and enlightening book aims to enrich and enlarge our understanding of O'Sullivan's pivotal body of western photographs by emphasizing the idea of context. This ambition encompasses several frames of reference: O'Sullivan's best-known images in relation to his larger body of survey work; the function his photographs served in relation to the survey's overall goals and methodologies; and the King Survey itself as a logical part of a complex and prolonged expeditionary endeavor. The volume also includes an essential catalogue raisonné of O'Sullivan's King Survey work.

Distributed for The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art

Exhibition Schedule:

Art Institute of Chicago(10/22/11-01/15/12)

Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art(04/14/12-08/26/12)

About the Author

Keith F. Davis is senior curator and Jane L. Aspinwall is assistant curator, both at the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art in Kansas City, Missouri.

Praise For…

"[A] splendid catalogue raisonné."—Larry McMurtry, Harper's Magazine
— Larry McMurtry
Product Details
ISBN: 9780300179842
ISBN-10: 0300179847
Publisher: Nelson Atkins
Publication Date: November 29th, 2011
Pages: 252
Language: English
Series: Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art