The art: Top: Pirkle Jones, Town of Monticello, Early Spring, 1956, from the series “Death of a Valley,” 1956. Bottom: Unknown photographer for Eastman’s Originals, Berryessa Lake, Monticello Dam, California, 1960.
The news: “The Green Elite: The Top 10 States for Renewable Power,” by Jordan Weissmann for TheAtlantic.com. Each of the top 10’s leading source of power is hydroconventional.
The source: The Pirkle Jones picture is from the collection of the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. The photo from the Eastman’s Originals Collection is in the special collections of the University of California, Davis, and was accessed via the indispensable Calisphere.
Critical note: In 1956 Pirkle Jones and Dorothea Lange collaborated on one of most underrated documentary projects of the post-war era: The evacuation and subsequent destruction of the Napa County town of Monticello, Calif. so that the federal Bureau of Reclamation could build Monticello Dam and create Lake Berryessa. Today the dam provides electricity to northern counties of the San Francisco Bay Area.
The Jones-Lange project, titled “Death of a Valley,” was featured in a special issue of Aperture magazine in 1960.