John Pfahl

(1939 - 2020) American


Born in New York in 1939, John Pfahl was raised in Wanaque, New Jersey. He received a BFA from Syracuse University's School of Art and his MA from Syracuse University's School of Communications. Pfahl is known for his innovative landscape photography such as Altered Landscape, his first major series of un-manipulated color photographs on which he worked from 1974 through 1978. In these pictures Pfahl manipulates the optics of the camera and plays tricks with perspective by using cleverly placed manmade objects in the landscape to mislead the eye of the viewer. For the past thirty years, Pfahl has been creating images of nature that transcribe the forces of nature and how humans affect it. His work has been shown in over hundred group and solo exhibitions and is held in many public and private collections throughout the world. From 1968 to 1983 he taught at the Rochester Institute of Technology, and later at the University of New Mexico, Albuquerque. Pfahl is currently professor of photography at the University at Buffalo, the State University of New York.
Renske van Leeuwen
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