Oak Jubilee
Oak Jubilee
Oak Jubilee
Oak Jubilee

Christopher Burkett

Oak Jubilee

Oregon, 1996

Original Cibachrome Photograph

Pristine condition

certified authentic
Add to Collection $1,500.00
Oak Jubilee
Oak Jubilee
Oak Jubilee
Oak Jubilee



Original Christopher Burkett Cibachrome photograph, “Oak Jubilee.” Individually handmade by Christopher Burkett from 8×10-format transparency film. Mounted on cotton rag Antique Rising Museum Board. Signed in pencil on mount with title, date and edition number on verso.



“At the beginning of fall in 1996 I went on a two-day photo excursion to southern Oregon. The autumn colors were just beginning to appear, and I had a burning desire to get out and see if I could find a worthwhile photograph.

I saw this image as I was driving back from the coast along the winding highway that was still at a low elevation before it started climbing over the Coast Range. It was one of those moments that as I passed by this tree, I caught a fleeting glimpse of it and immediately knew it would make a photograph. I had to find a place to turn around, came back and parked on the shoulder of the road.

The colors and tones were remarkable, and this was the only tree within miles that had such color and visual interest. However, even though the light was soft, the overall contrast was high due to the dark oak trunk. I exposed one piece of film with my 8×10 view camera and 300mm lens at f/64 for one second on Velvia 50 film. Fortunately, there was no wind so all the leaves are very sharp.

When I examined the processed film the contrast was very high as I expected. I did not want to make a Cibachrome that made the very dark trunk pitch black but if I reduced the contrast enough to show the detail in the trunk it would flatten all the contrast in the colored leaves. In 1996 it was an unsurmountable difficulty.

The image had to wait 21 years until 2017 when I was finally willing to tackle it. I spent several days working on it and needed to make it with a combination of two separate contrast masks on it, each one precisely exposed and developed to very critical values. Given the wide range of colors in the image it nevertheless requires an extremely precise overall color balance for the colors to interact properly to bring the image to life. And not surprisingly, there are some parts of the image that require dodging which has to be accurate to within a fraction of a second.

The final Cibachromes needed a title that expressed the wild, exuberant feeling that the image conveys to me, thus the title Oak Jubilee.”


All Christopher Burkett photographs sold at Photography West are new and in pristine condition. HD videos of the individual piece you are purchasing are available upon request. For more information, please


Christopher Burkett has labored for over four decades to create what many regard as the most impeccable and luminous color photographs in the history of photography. Gifted with a contemplative spirit as well as painter’s eye, Burkett has an uncommon ability to capture the natural world in a manner that simultaneously reflects “the world behind the world” as Minor White and Paul Caponigro might have put it. And although Burkett has been compared by curators to American color landscape photographers Eliot Porter and Ernst Haas, whose genre of American landscape photography he extended, neither of them exclusively developed their own film, nor attempted the darkroom standard clearly in evidence upon viewing Burkett’s original Cibachromes.

christopher burkett in his darkroom


Cibachrome, also known as Ilfochrome, is among the most stable of all color photographic processes. The dyes reside within the emulsion layers, giving the photograph its characteristic color saturation. The base is a polyester triacetate, rather than fiber-based paper, which adds to the longevity. It was a positive-to-positive photographic process based on the Gasparcolor process, created in 1933 by Bela Gaspar, a Hungarian chemist. Purchased after the merger of Ilford UK and Ciba-Geigy Photochemie of Switzerland, the process was first trademarked and marketed as Cibachrome in 1963. Each Cibachrome is composed of ten layers containing various combinations of light-sensitive silver halides and dyes that are sensitive to blue, green, or red light waves, which gives it an incredible depth and three-dimensional quality. After exposure of a positive, either through an enlarger or direct contact, the Cibachrome must be developed with black-and-white developing chemicals. This step creates a silver negative image within the layers. Next, the photograph must be bleached. The bleaching rids the photograph of dyes in proportion to the amount of silver that has been developed in the previous step and produces a positive dye image in color. In 2011, Cibachrome/Ilfochrome products were discontinued and it is now considered a historical process.