Apr 14, 2010

New York, NY (Smoothing Toupee)

New York, NY (Smoothing Toupee)

c.1948–49, printed 1981

Louis Faurer

(American, 1916-2001)

Gelatin silver print

Paper: 28 x 35.6 cm (11 x 14 in.); Matted: 35.6 x 45.7 cm (14 x 18 in.)

Gift of Howard Greenberg 2009.482



Between 1946 and 1951, Louis Faurer hunted for images almost daily in Times Square. By this point, it housed not just legitimate theaters, movie houses, and music halls but also less elevated forms of entertainment, including burlesque houses and dime-a-dance halls (also known as taxi dance halls). The area was a draw for anyone seeking escape and amusement, whether residents or tourists. Faurer sought revealing, private vignettes amid the crowds, such as this one of a woman adjusting her date’s ruffled toupee. Faurer’s hunt was aided by the bright lights of signs and marquees.

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