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Church collected photographs and daguerreotypes by early pioneers of the art, including Désiré Charnay, Eadweard Muybridge, and Carleton Watkins. His collection appears to have served largely as a source of inspiration and armchair travel, reminding him of favorite locations and details of architecture, culture, and landscape.
In Fire and Ice, images from Church’s collection are shown along with a selection of his own oil sketches, drawings, and archival materials. Some of the photographs are devoted to the varied geographical interests reflected in Church’s art and travels: Central and South America, the Middle East, and the polar North. Others served as visual reference for the design and construction of Olana. Lavishly illustrated, Fire & Ice shows how the photographs in Church’s collection echoed the principal stages of the painter’s career ; Foreword by Kevin Avery .