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  • Provenance

    Bruce Silverstein Gallery, New York
    Christie's, New York, Modernist Photographs from a European Collection, 23 April 2007, lot 129

  • Exhibited

    Furthermore, Fraenkel Gallery, San Francisco, 22 April- 26 June 2010

  • Catalogue Essay

    “Last year I spent the summer at the famous New England fishing village of Gloucester, and made a series of photographic still-lifes. . . For the first time in my life, subject matter, as such, had ceased to be of primary importance. Instead, I found myself involved in the relationships of these objects, so much so that these pictures turned out to be deeply moving and personal experiences. This work was a new departure for me.” Aaron Siskind, 1945

    In 1944, Aaron Siskind photographed in Gloucester, Massachusetts, producing a series of images that marked a distinct shift in his vision. A native New Yorker, Siskind was affiliated with the Photo League and had produced an accomplished body of photographs in the 1930s later published as Harlem Document. By the early 1940s, however, he confessed that the “documentary approach left me wanting something.” Siskind had photographed in Gloucester before, but 1944 found him approaching subject matter in a new way. Working rigorously with one camera and one lens, Siskind took images that used photography’s ability to capture detail but verged upon the abstract. The photograph offered here is an exceptional example from this year. It was this work that brought him to the attention of the Abstract Expressionist dealer Charles Egan, who saw the connection between Siskind’s groundbreaking photographs and paintings by Barnett Newman, Willem de Kooning, and Franz Kline, and who would give Siskind his first one-man exhibition in 1947.

149

Gloucester

1944
Gelatin silver print.
7 1/2 x 9 1/2 in. (19.1 x 24.1 cm)
Signed, titled and dated in pencil on the mount.

Estimate
$20,000 - 30,000 

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Sarah Krueger
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Vanessa Hallett
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Photographs

New York Auction 4 October 2018