As it rained heavily in New York City yesterday, I decided to check out the “Stieglitz, Strand, Steichen” exhibition at The Metropolitan Museum of Art (MET) in NYC.
As luck would have it, a guided tour began just a few minutes after I entered the first gallery of this exhibition of 115 photos by these three great American photographers. As I wanted to learn more about photography, I happily followed the group of mostly elderly women on their afternoon outing.
As Alfred Stieglitz is considered the impresario of modern American photography, we began the tour looking at his early 20th century photos of New York City, etc. One of the highlights for me was his serial composite portrait of Georgia O’Keeffe, his wife. This was a series of about twelve photos of O’Keeffe in her younger days. Apparently, she was not thrilled to be photographed in the nude but this composite portrait of her put O’Keeffe on the map. Stieglitz referred to this as a portrait believing it was not possible to capture an image of a person in just one photograph.
We then looked at three iconic photographs of the Flatiron building by Edward Steichen who considered Stieglitz as a mentor. This often photographed building in NYC is one of my favorite skyscrapers in the world and thus, I was happy to see these photos. Steichen was heavily influenced by Japanese nature paintings and it showed through in this series of photos. He beautifully captured the Flatiron behind some tree branches on a winter day in the early 20th century.
Finally, we looked at some photographs by Paul Strand. Another of Stieglitz’s mentees, Strand is famous for his street portraits including his photo of a blind woman.
Fore more information on this show, click here.