On Firm Ground

Author: Photographs by Larry Kanfer
A stunning photographic journey through the landscapes of the Midwest
Publication Date
Paperback: 10/20/2008
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About the Book

To open On Firm Ground is to enter a deeply loved and meticulously observed country, a land generous with its gifts and unforgiving in its climate, a land that yields its beauty only to the patient observer. In the deep grain of plowed fields, the hypnotic grace of tall grasses, the texture of weathered barn wood, Larry Kanfer harvests all the subtlety of color and season and amplifies the quiet elegance of the region.

In this exhilarating celebration of the prairie, Kanfer brings the understated and unexpected beauty of the Midwest to the fore. In the clean lines of field and horizon, in the vast expanse of a threatening or brilliantly clear sky, in the pinpoint of light from a farmhouse window that fends off the darkness pressing in on all sides, Kanfer's images capture the living, breathing exchange of human and natural energies that animates the heartland.

Ranging through the seasons and throughout the Midwest, On Firm Ground is a celebration of the subtlety that distinguishes the prairie from any other place.

About the Author

Larry Kanfer is an award-winning photographic artist who operates galleries in Champaign, Illinois, and online at www.kanfer.com. His previous books include Prairiescapes, On Second Glance: Midwest Photographs, On This Island: Photographs of Long Island, and Postcards from the Prairie: Photographic Memories from the University of Illinois. His original artwork is featured in public and private collections nationally.

Also by this author

Prairiescapes coverOn Second Glance coverBarns of Illinois coverIllini Loyalty coverChicagoscapes coverA Prairie State of Mind cover


"The photographic artistry that is the hallmark of Larry Kanfer translates into images that are sometimes moody or fragile, other times stark or awash with color. . . . His eye for the beauty of the Illinois prairie [has] captured the imagination of thousands."--Illinois Quarterly

"Larry Kanfer is one of the country's more gifted photographers. He has the sensitivity and eye of Ansel Adams and Eliot Porter."--ARTnews

"Preserves the fundamental beauty of the heartland. . . . This book should make transplanted Midwesterners ache with homesickness. Meanwhile, those of us who are still here can credit ourselves with the good sense to live in a region filled with such understated beauty."--Midwest Living

"Deeply and lusciously beautiful. . . . The colors are so rich, the compositions so striking, the effect so lovely. . . . Reproduced with startling quality and depth of color."--Virginia Quarterly Review

"The images were photographed for their beauty: the patterns formed by nature or by row crop plantings, the way early morning light or twilight glow plays off trees, buildings, or landforms. . . . A joy to contemplate."--The Annals of Iowa