Photograph – New York Strand, Paul  (American, 1890-1976)

Paul Strand was the transitional figure in the shift from pictorialism to the ‘"straight” approach in creative American photography. In 1915 he abandoned soft-focus effects, at Stieglitz’s urging, and began making images with a directness and purity considered inherent in the photographic medium. Among the earliest were street portraits, including this one, which evidenced the strong social and humanistic consciousness that characterized Strand’s work throughout his long career. He wrote in the last issue of Camera Work (where this image appeared), Photography is only a new road from a different direction but moving toward the common goal, which is Life. [1]

Reproduced / Exhibited

Greenough, Sarah, and William C. Agee. Modern Art and America: Alfred Stieglitz and His New York Galleries ; [catalog of an Exhibition Held at the National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., 28 January – 22 April 2001]. Washington: National Gallery of Art, 2000. no. 84.

Heilbrun, Françoise. Towards Photojournalism. Paris: Musée d’Orsay, 2007. no. 56.

Homer, William I. Alfred Stieglitz and the American Avant-Guarde. Boston: New York Graphic Society, 1979. no. 125.

Newhall, Beaumont. The History of Photography: From 1839 to the Present. , 2012. p. 173.

Thornton, Gene. Masters of the Camera: Stieglitz, Steichen & Their Successors. New York: Ridge Press, 1976 p. 62


[1] Peterson, Christian A. Camera Work: Process & Image : [exhibition, Minneapolis, Minneapolis Institute of Arts, August 31-November 3, 1985, Seattle, Seattle Art Museum, November 22, 1985-February 2, 1986]. Minneapolis: Minneapolis Institute of arts, 1985. p. 72.