The Coast News Group
A Brush with Art

Photographer captures peak experiences

It’s been said that Cardiff photographer Abe Ordover’s work captures the peak experiences that changes one’s life.

Abe Ordover is director of the Ordover Gallery at the Museum of Natural History in Balboa Park and currently has work on display at L Street Fine Art Gallery in San Diego’s Gaslamp Quarter. Photo courtesy of Will Gibson
With emphasis on color and an impressionistic approach, his nature-based images evoke a viewer’s strong emotional response reflective of the artist’s original experience.

A native of Far Rockaway, New York, Ordover relocated to Cardiff in 2004 after opening his gallery in the Cedros Design District of Solana Beach.

Ordover says of his gallery, which is devoted to nature photography, “For the most part art galleries ignored nature photography, including images created by the great National Geographic photographers. I was fortunate to enlist many of those professionals in the gallery and thus brought their work, and my own, to public notice as fine arts.”

Since 2006 Ordover has also served as director of the Ordover Gallery at the Museum of Natural History in Balboa Park, where he regularly curates highly regarded photographic exhibitions.

Ordover worked 43 years in the legal profession, having graduated magna cum laude from Syracuse University and the Yale Law School.

After ten years as litigator and trial lawyer followed by twenty years as law professor at Hofstra University in New York and Emory University Law School in Atlanta, Ordover established a firm specializing in arbitration and mediation.

Ordover says of venturing into photography, “I began shooting in 1980 during a trip to Rocky Mountain National Park. Thus hooked, I began traveling with nature pros all over the country. That was my art education and it continues to this day.”

During the past two decades, Ordover has photographed exotic locations in the Middle East, Africa, Antarctica, Alaska, Iceland, Arctic Norway, and the Galapagos Islands. Having photographed some of the earth’s most breathtaking regions, Ordover says of his work, “I am seeking to convey the emotion I felt when I stepped into the scene.”

New York Times critic William Zimmer said of Ordover’s work, “The grand moments in all our lives are embellished. The peak experiences are the kind that changes one’s life, and Abe Ordover captures them.”

When Ordover began using Adobe Photoshop in his work, he found that his images reached a new aesthetic level. Digitally manipulating his photographs to create images uniquely his own, Ordover says, “The computer gives me an emotional, dramatic lens.”

He continues, “The evolution of my photography has primarily been a movement from representational images to abstract renditions.”

Ordover has authored several books including his most recent “Roar of the Monarchs,” and had numerous solo shows in New York City, Atlanta, San Diego, and Palo Alto, Calif., as well as the Parthenon Museum in Nashville, Tenn., and the Fernbank Museum of Natural History in Atlanta.

Photographic works by Abe Ordover, along with glass work by Michelle Kurtis Cole, are currently on exhibit in “Mysteries of Light and Form” at L Street Fine Art in San Diego’s Gaslamp Quarter through Dec. 31, 2012. The public is invited to attend the artists’ reception Nov. 17.

Learn more about Abe Ordover at