Gift of the artist, in honor of his mother, Mrs. Helen Klein, 1987
Not on view
Upon his return home in the late 1940s after eight years abroad in the army, Klein found his native New York City familiar but strange. Commissioned by Vogue to create a photographic book about the city, Klein recorded its vibrancy and grittiness, producing an uncompromising portrait that the magazine ultimately rejected. He subsequently took his photographs to Paris and published them under the title Life is Good & Good for You in New York. For this photograph, Klein asked two boys on Upper Broadway to pose. One pointed a gun at the camera, his face erupting with rage, mimicking the stereotypical poses of criminals in our image-saturated society.
Inscription: Inscribed and signed, verso, BL and BR: "Gun 1, New York 1954 William Klein 1986"
The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Faces from the Collection," January 1, 1987–May 1, 1987.
Bronx Museum of the Arts. "Street Art, Street Life," September 14, 2008–January 25, 2009.