Paul Strand (American, 1890-1976), Photograph - New York, ca. 1917, photogravure (photo: Phil)
Photographs from the first half of this century include landmark prints by Atget; works by Stieglitz and his contemporaries; images by Lewis Hine and Berenice Abbott; a wide range of American and European modernist works; socially-committed Depression-era images; and holdings in photojournalism and street photography.
The DAC has 70 works by Eugène Atget (French, 1856-1927). These include a portfolio of 20 photographs printed posthumously by Berenice Abbott, and a probably unique collection of 50 prints which Atget compiled in a hand-made album, Interiors of Churches (Intérieurs d'églises) (an exhibition catalog on the topic of this album is available). Surviving examples of Atget's albums are extremely rare, most having been disassembled and the prints sold separately.
American Pictorialism, 1895-1910
Alfred Stieglitz, the leader of the Pictorialist movement, is represented in the DAC Collection by 4 photogravures (including The Steerage and Terminal) and by several issues of his publication Camera Work. Photographers in Stieglitz's circle are represented in photogravures by Prescott Adamson (1); James Craig Annan (8); Alvin Langdon Coburn (10); Robert Demachy (2); Frank Eugene (10); Frederick Evans (3 platinum prints); Herbert French (5); Gertrude Käsebier (2 gum-bichromate prints); George Seeley (10); and Clarence White (4, plus 1 platinum print). The collection also has pictorialist California landscapes of the 1920s by John Paul Edwards (2) and Karl Struss (1, plus 2 other subjects).
Photographs by Lewis Hine (American, 1874-1940) in the DAC collection include Steel Worker, Empire State, as well as a group of 14 vintage photographs taken for the National Child Labor Committee. In the DAC archives are Hine's own identifications and descriptions of these subjects.
Among the Davison Art Center's 78 photographs by Berenice Abbott (American, 1898-1991) are 50 views of pre-Civil-War urban architecture, commissioned by Henry-Russell Hitchcock at Wesleyan in 1932. Many of these images are known only in prints at the DAC.
American modernist photographers represented in the DAC Collection include: Margaret Bourke-White (1); Wynn Bullock (1); Laura Gilpin (4); Harold Edgerton (5); Clarence John Laughlin (2); Helen Levitt (Children with Broken Mirror); George Platt Lynes (4); Barbara Morgan (63, primarily of noted dancers, such as Martha Graham); Wendell Macrae (Burlington Zephyr); Wright Morris (5); Eliot Porter (5 Cibachromes); Robert F. Sheehan (57 Cibachromes, printed from his 472 Kodachrome slides, 1949-55, in the collection, plus 129 black-and-white prints); Edward Steichen (2, including Isadora Duncan at the Portal of the Parthenon); Ralph Steiner (1); Paul Strand (7, including White Horse, Taos);& George Tice (3); James Van Der Zee (2); Todd Webb (2); and Minor White (3). Photographers associated with the f/64 movement in California represented in the collection are: Ansel Adams (6, including Winter Sunrise); Imogen Cunningham (1); Sonya Noskowiak (3); Willard Van Dyke (3); Brett Weston (3); and Edward Weston (5 California subjects, includingLake Tenaya).
Photographers represented in the DAC Collection who worked in Europe during the first half of the 20th century include John Heartfield (33 collotype photomontages); Heinrich Heidersberger (1); Jacmar (Swimmers); André Kertész (14 images dating from 1912-1975); Camille Lacheroy (Composition with Tuna Cans); Werner Mantz (1); Man Ray (2, including one of his Rayographs); and August Sander (4, including 3 from Men Without Masks).
FSA Photographs, 1935-1940
Dorothea Lange (American, 1895-1965), Migrant Mother, Nipomo, CA, 1936 (printed by Arthur Rothstein, 1976), gelatin silver print (photo: Phil)
Farm Security Administration photographers represented in the DAC Collection are: Jack Delano (8), Walker Evans (52), Dorothea Lange (9), Russell Lee (15), Carl Mydans (2), Arthur Rothstein (34), Ben Shahn (6), John Vachon (7), and Marion Post Wolcott (16, including a group of 8 Gee's Bend subjects on FSA exhibition mounts).
The DAC Collection has special strengths in the area of photojournalism, including early examples by Thomas Annan (1); James Wallace Black (Franklin Street, Boston after the Great Fire),and Jacob Riis (2 New York slum subjects); by FSA artists cited above; and works by Margaret Bourke-White (Fort Peck andRoosevelt's Dressing Table, both for Life magazine); Alfred Eisenstadt (2, including V-J Day at Times Square); Orville Emmons (10 Mexican subjects); Gjon Mili (1); Gordon Parks (1); Eugene Richards (2 from Homeless in America series); W. Eugene Smith (12); Lou Stouman (Times Square); Weegee (The Critic); Max Yavno (2, including Muscle Beach); and war subjects by Robert Capa (1 Spanish Civil War); Arthur Rothstein (4 WW II); Eugene Smith (Saipan); Harvey Weber (12 WW II); and Larry Burrows (2 Vietnam).