The Last Cowboy: Adam Jahiel
The American cowboy has all but disappeared over the past several decades. In 2003, there were only 10,000 who identified themselves as cowboys and about one-third of those made their living at rodeos or circuses. There are a few, however, that still cling tenaciously to that way of life. Living in the Great Basin area (large parts of Nevada and Utah), these men hold to the values of hard work, knowledge, and skill. Adam Jahiel has spent years living with and photographing the life of these Great Basin cowboys. “I basically move in and live with them for short periods of time,” he says, “I become a part of the crew, part of the family. We ride together, eat together, camp together, and move together.” These photographs, although taken recently, are iconic, timeless. When I think of the American West, this is exactly what I see. I can see the cowboys from the past etched into the faces of these men. The wide open skies and dusty landscapes are the same today as they were a hundred years ago. They make me long for a day that I never knew, and I’m not really sure ever actually existed.