Deer Season, Back Lake, Coos County, New Hampshire

Deer Season, Back Lake, Coos County, New Hampshire


Barbara Bosworth

(American, b. 1953)

Gelatin silver print

Image: 24.5 x 39.1 cm (9 5/8 x 15 3/8 in.); Paper: 25.2 x 40.3 cm (9 15/16 x 15 7/8 in.); Matted: 45.7 x 55.9 cm (18 x 22 in.)

Judith K. and S. Sterling McMillan III Photography Purchase Fund 1995.84



Barbara Bosworth explores the landscape with her camera in order to understand how people interact with nature’s more untamed elements. She captures outdoor human activities, from swimming and sightseeing to hunting and building. In this photograph, Bosworth framed a wide view of the landscape, preserving a scene depicting a small cabin, trees, and a road on Back Lake. The image is highly detailed; notice a common sight during hunting season: a deer has been hung from a tree in order to cure the meat. Part pastoral depiction of the natural landscape, part unsettling rendering of a ritual of hunting season, Bosworth’s portrait is suffused with tension. The deer pulls heavily against its thin rope ties as it simultaneously appears to defy death and gravity, balancing impossibly on its hind legs.

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