Structures of Utility

Capturing the disquietingly abandoned landscape that is the beating heart of California

Packing sheds, grain silos, wooden tank house outbuildings, and mine elevators have been eloquently captured by David Stark Wilson’s keen, appreciative, and knowledgeable eye. Using a large format view camera, Wilson has elevated these architecturally underappreciated structures of pure utility that dot our rural landscape and given them consequence, meaning, and a haunting beauty.

The text of Structures of Utility is a quiet yet passionate meditation on Wilson’s dedication to “pursue in the natural landscape a reprieve from urban existence.” In both words and pictures, he captures the disquietingly abandoned landscape that is the beating heart of California.


“A beautiful presentation which will appeal to art library collections as well as general California collections.”

The Bookwatch


“I have numerous black and white visually expository books on my shelves and I feel that David Stark Wilson's first effort in this category stands well with the best.”

Rangefinder Magazine

About the Author

David Stark WilsonDavid Stark Wilson, born in Berkeley, California, is an award-winning building designer and has been a photographer since the age of seventeen. He is the author of Structures of Utility, and Above All: Mount Whitney and California's Highest Peaks. An avid mountaineer, he began to photograph mountain landscapes at an early age. He lives in Berkeley with his wife, Stacia Cronin, and children, Chase and Kai.