New York

New York

c. 1942

Helen Levitt

(American, 1913-2009)

Gelatin silver print

Image: 11.3 x 17.3 cm (4 7/16 x 6 13/16 in.); Matted: 35.6 x 45.7 cm (14 x 18 in.)

John L. Severance Fund 1990.134



Helen Levitt's long and distinguished career reflects her ability to create lyrical compositions from the commonplace events of New York street life. Her black-and-white work from the 1940s depicts life in working-class and slum neighborhoods, revealing moments of joy, sadness, reverie, tenderness, work, and play. Her casual, nonintrusive style is evident in this example. With remarkable intuition and technical skill, she created an evocative image that is neither idealizing nor cynical, but simply reveals the love between mother and child.

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