Admission is always free Directions

Open today: 10:00 to 5:00

The Robert Frank Collection

Black White and Things, 1952, 1990.28.29.6-7

Black White and Things, 1952, 1990.28.29.6 – 1990.28.29.7

Black White and Things, 1952

While in Zurich in October of 1952, Frank assembled photographs taken in Europe, South America, and the United States in the preceding years into a bound book called Black White and Things. Designed by Frank's friend Werner Zryd, and with only a brief introductory statement describing the three sections, the photographs appear in a sophisticated sequence that relies on subtle, witty juxtapositions and powerful visual formal arrangements to evoke a wide range of emotions.

Frank made three copies of this book, all identical in size, construction, and sequence. He gave one copy to his father, gave one to Edward Steichen, and kept one. The book that belonged to his father is now in a private collection; Steichen's copy resides at the Museum of Modern Art, New York; and in 1990 Frank gave his copy to the Robert Frank Collection at the National Gallery of Art.

For a list of prints and contact sheets included in the Black White and Things volume, see Robert Frank photographs and contact sheets published in Black White and Things. This spreadsheet includes each page of the volume owned by the National Gallery, as well as 21 contact sheets that include pictures from the series. These are not necessarily all of the contact sheets in the collection that include pictures from the series, only the ones explicitly labeled as such by Frank.

Black White and Things, 1952, page spreads

Black White and Things, 1952, contact sheets