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Dresser (Rod) photography archive
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Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Conditions Governing Access
  • Immediate Source of Acquisition
  • Arrangement
  • Biographical / Historical
  • Preferred Citation
  • Related Materials
  • Scope and Contents
  • Conditions Governing Use

  • Language of Material: English
    Contributing Institution: Department of Special Collections and University Archives
    Title: Rod Dresser photography archive
    Identifier/Call Number: M2102
    Physical Description: 69 Linear Feet (14 manuscript boxes, 44 flat boxes, 2 card boxes, 7 map folders)
    Physical Description: 1.023 gigabyte(s) (4 DVDs)
    Date (inclusive): 1980-2000s

    Conditions Governing Access

    Collection is open for research, with exception of digital materials, which are closed until processed. Materials must be requested at least 36 hours in advance of intended use.

    Immediate Source of Acquisition

    Gift of Maggi Weston, 2015.


    Many of the prints arrived in labeled boxes, which have been transcribed as titles here. These were mostly organized by subject (eg. Dunes, Sunrise, Trees). Prints in unlabeled boxes have been organized into similar categories.
    Negatives were generally ordered alphabetically by location or subject (in the case of people). Some were in binders, the orders for which have been preserved. The rest has been sorted alphabetically.

    Biographical / Historical

    Roderick Arthur Dresser (1933-2011) was a photographer in California's Monterey Peninsula area. He worked in the United States Navy for many years, before retiring to run his family's construction business. He later began to dedicate himself to photography full-time, starting with a job as Ansel Adams's special photographic assistant in 1981, remaining active in the studio for most of that decade. After the latter's death, he worked as the business manager for the Ansel Adams Publishing Rights Trust and then went on to teach workshops and give lectures around the United States. Dresser considered Ansel Adams, Edward Weston, Brett Weston, Paul Strand, and Harry Callahan to be major influences in his work. His early work had a major focus on the California landscapes, with increasingly abstract interpretations approaching minimalism. He published a limited-edition monogram, Artist's Choice, in 2000. -- adapted from donor description

    Preferred Citation

    [identification of item], Rod Dresser photography archive (M2102). Dept. of Special Collections and University Archives, Stanford University Libraries, Stanford, Calif.

    Related Materials

    A copy of Rod Dresser's monograph, Artist's Choice, is held by Stanford Libraries. https://searchworks.stanford.edu/view/11509962

    Scope and Contents

    This collection consists primarily of photographic materials, including negatives, contact sheets, slides, and prints. Though the majority of these were created by Rod Dresser, a small number of slides contain images of other artists' work. He photographed a variety of subjects, including architecture and buildings, landscapes and the natural world, objects and still lifes, and people both in studio and outdoors.
    There is also a small series containing other media such as optical discs, film reels, business cards, printed notes, a book, and a news clipping.

    Conditions Governing Use

    © Stanford University. All Rights Reserved.

    Subjects and Indexing Terms

    Photography, Artistic
    Photographers -- California.