Ansel Adams - Photographs New York Thursday, April 8, 2021 | Phillips

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  • Provenance

    Acquired from the artist by photographer Pirkle Jones
    Sotheby’s, New York, 3 April 2012, Lot 56

  • Catalogue Essay

    This photograph was originally acquired from Ansel Adams by his long-time assistant and fellow-photographer, Pirkle Jones (1914-2009). Adams photographed this uncharacteristic urban study during his first trip to New York City, in March of 1933, where he met Alfred Stieglitz. In its unadorned presentation of classically urban subject matter, it bears similarities to Stieglitz’s earlier work done on the streets of the city, including such images as The Terminal, and looks forward to Berenice Abbott’s Changing New York project which would begin in 1935.

    The presence of Adams’s middle initial “E.” in his signature on this print is indicative of its early date. Adams was named for his uncle, Ansel Easton. He used the E in his signature until 1932 when it was revealed to him that his uncle had cheated his father in a business scheme in 1911, ruining him financially. After that point, Adams forever omitted the initial from his signature.


Horse and Cart Under the El, New York City

Gelatin silver print.
4 1/4 x 5 7/8 in. (10.8 x 14.9 cm)
Signed ‘Ansel E. Adams’ in pencil on the mount.

$8,000 - 12,000 

Sold for $10,710

Contact Specialist

Sarah Krueger
Head of Department, Photographs

Vanessa Hallett
Worldwide Head of Photographs and Deputy Chairman, Americas



New York Auction 8 April 2021