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Sarah Greenough, “Alfred Stieglitz/Sun Rays—Paula, Berlin/1889, printed 1916,” Alfred Stieglitz Key Set, NGA Online Editions, (accessed July 12, 2024).

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Key Set Entry

Related Key Set Photographs


The photographs hanging on the wall are, from left to right, top row: The Approaching Storm (illustrated in Die Photographische Rundschau 3:7 [1888], frontispiece), Paula (location unknown, illustrated in Sotheby’s, New York, auction catalogue, 9 November 1976, lot 174), The Approaching Storm (see above); middle row: Paula (location unknown); portrait of Stieglitz (by an unknown photographer); and bottom row: Paula (location unknown). In the mirror is another print of Paula (see above).

Stieglitz may have submitted this image to The Amateur Photographer’s “Travelling Studentship Competition” as A Study in Light and Shade. The journal notes: “all the negatives are un-retouched, and no cloud negatives are used. They have been taken with a Steinheil Aplanat. The plates used include Obernetter, Eosine, Schlenssn, Perulz (eosine), and Lumière. The developers have been pyro and soda and iron, and the whole of the prints have been produced in platinotype” (The Amateur Photographer 12 [18 July 1890], 41).

The woman shown here is probably Stieglitz’s lover, Paula Bauschmied, who lived in Munich and with whom Stieglitz had an illegitimate daughter (Georgia O’Keeffe to the law firm of Lowenstein, Pitcher, Spence, Hotchkiss, Amann & Parr, 19 January 1956, private collection).

Stieglitz Collections

A corresponding print was given to the following institution(s) by Alfred Stieglitz during his lifetime, or was received or acquired from the estate:

Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Yale University, New Haven, YCAL MSS 85, box 132 [lantern slide] (inscribed: Sun Rays [Berlin, 1889])

Other Collections

A print corresponding with this photograph can also be found in the following collection(s):

Amon Carter Museum, Fort Worth

Location unknown (inscribed: Paula— / 1889 Berlin)

Lifetime Exhibitions

A print from the same negative—perhaps a photograph from the Gallery’s collection—appeared in the following exhibition(s) during Alfred Stieglitz’s lifetime:

possibly 1891, New York, Fourth Annual Joint Exhibition (no. 306, as Study in Light and Shade)
possibly 1891, New York, Society of Amateur Photographers (no. 223, as Study in Light and Shade)
1921, New York (no. 3, as Sunlight and Shadow, 1889)
1934, New York (no. 5, as Sun Rays, Berlin, 1889)
1937, New York (no. 16, as Sun Rays, 1889)

Lifetime Publications

A reproduction of this work appeared in the following publication(s) during Alfred Stieglitz’s lifetime:

Waldo Frank et al., America & Alfred Stieglitz (New York, 1934): pl. 31b (ill., Light and Shadows, 1887)

E. M. Benson, “Alfred Stieglitz: The Man and the Book,” American Magazine of Art 28 (January 1935): 39 (ill., Light and Shadow, Berlin, 1887)

Robert W. Marks, “Man with a Cause,” Coronet 4 (September 1938): 168 (ill., Light and Shadow, 1889)

Robert W. Marks, “Stieglitz—Patriarch of Photography,” Popular Photography 6 (April 1940): 21 (ill., Paula—Sun Rays)

“High Card,” Time 41 (11 January 1943): 44 (ill., Paula)

“Speaking of Pictures . . . These are by one of Photography’s Pioneers,” Life 14:14 (5 April 1943): 6 (ill., Paula, 1889)


by Alfred Stieglitz, on mount, lower left, in graphite: Sun Rays—Paula—(Paulstrasse, Berlin) 1889.— / Print 1916. Alfred Stieglitz — / A1 Print


Georgia O'Keeffe; gift to NGA, 1949.

Associated Names

O'Keeffe, Georgia

Exhibition History

Photographs by Alfred Stieglitz, National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC, February 3–May 8, 1983; Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, June 17–August 14, 1983; The Art Institute of Chicago, October 18, 1983–January 3, 1984
Stieglitz in the Darkroom, National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC, October 4, 1992–February 14, 1993
Alfred Stieglitz: Known and Unknown, National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC, June 2–September 2, 2002; The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, October 6, 2002–January 5, 2003

In Light of the Past: Celebrating Twenty-Five Years of Collecting Photographs at the National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC, May 3–July 26, 2015


Cramer, Konrad. "Stupendous Stieglitz." PSA Journal 13 (November 1947): 723.
Norman, Dorothy. "Alfred Stieglitz on Photography.” Magazine of Art 43 (December 1950): 300.
Norman, Dorothy. Alfred Stieglitz: An American Seer. New York, 1973: 1.
Greenough, Sarah, and Juan Hamilton. Alfred Stieglitz: Photographs and Writings. Washington, 1983: no. 3, pl. 8.
Paulson, Ronald. Figure and Abstraction in Contemporary Painting. New Brunswick and London, 1990: repro. 141.
Greenough, Sarah. Alfred Stieglitz: The Key Set: The Alfred Stieglitz Collection of Photographs. Washington, 2002: vol. 1, cat. 60.

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