This exhibition is no longer on view at the National Gallery. Please follow the links below for related online resources or visit our current exhibitions schedule.This exhibition of some 70 photographs covers a very fertile period in American photography between the publication of Walker Evans' American Photographs in 1938 and the release of Robert Frank's The Americans in 1958. During these two decades several photographers working in New York profoundly changed the course of the medium. They include Evans and Frank, as well as Roy DeCarava, Louis Faurer, Sid Grossman, William Klein, Leon Levinstein, Helen Levitt, Lisette Model, and Weegee. In order to capture the transitory nature of modern life, these photographers used small unobtrusive cameras and available light, and allowed their images, sometimes random in terms of subject matter, to be blurred, out of focus, and even off kilter. Evans began in 1938 with a series of photographs of riders on the New York subways, soon followed by Levitt's equally candid, yet far more fluid studies of children on the streets of New York; DeCarava's poignant studies of African American life described in dense, luxurious shades of black; Model's boldly aggressive photographs of New York's bars and nightclubs; Klein's and Weegee's profoundly disturbing photographs of New York's latent violence; and Frank's poetic and often provocative views of the city in the early 1950s. The exhibition is drawn from the Gallery's rich holdings of work by Evans and Frank, as well as recent major acquisitions of work by DeCarava, Klein, Levitt, Model, and Weegee.
Organization: Organized by the National Gallery of Art, Washington.
Sponsor: The exhibition is made possible by the generous support of the Trellis Fund and The Ryna and Melvin Cohen Family Foundation.