Art/ Collection/ Art Object

New York

Artist:
Helen Levitt (American, 1913–2009)
Date:
1939
Medium:
Gelatin silver print
Dimensions:
16.1 x 22.9 cm (6 5/16 x 9 in.)
Classification:
Photographs
Credit Line:
Ford Motor Company Collection, Gift of Ford Motor Company and John C. Waddell, 1987
Accession Number:
1987.1100.75
Rights and Reproduction:
© Estate of Helen Levitt
Not on view
Helen Levitt practiced photography with a small handheld camera on the streets of New York, making tender depictions of ordinary city people, and especially children. The street was a stage for her young subjects, upon which they played games, performed improvisational dramas, and made fantastic, untutored chalk drawings such as this figure with double pupils and a hovering crown. For Levitt, graffiti and children's drawings were present-day emblems of a pre-civilized, magical art, both spontaneous and archetypal.
Inscription: Signed and inscribed on print, verso UC: "n.y. CIRCA 1945 // Helen Levitt"; signed on print, verso LC: "Helen Levitt"; inscribed on print, verso C: "6 [in box]"; inscribed on print, verso C: "[5 pointed star]"; inscribed on print, verso UL: "RF"; inscribed on print, verso CL: "OA 80507"; inscribed on print, verso LR: "106+ // ER";
Helen Levitt; [Prakapas Gallery, Bronxville, New York]; John C. Waddell, New York (June 19, 1980)

The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "The New Vision: Photography between the World Wars. The Ford Motor Company Collection at The Metropolitan Museum of Art," September 23, 1989–December 31, 1989.

San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. "The New Vision: Photography between the World Wars. The Ford Motor Company Collection at The Metropolitan Museum of Art," February 28, 1990–April 22, 1990.

Los Angeles County Museum of Art. "The New Vision: Photography between the World Wars. The Ford Motor Company Collection at The Metropolitan Museum of Art," May 10, 1990–July 15, 1990.

High Museum of Art. "The New Vision: Photography between the World Wars. The Ford Motor Company Collection at The Metropolitan Museum of Art," February 5, 1991–April 28, 1991.

Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. "The New Vision: Photography between the World Wars. The Ford Motor Company Collection at The Metropolitan Museum of Art," June 8, 1991–August 4, 1991.

IVAM, Centre Julio Gonzalez, Valencia. "The New Vision, IVAM, Centre Julio Gonzalez, Valencia," January 20, 1995–March 26, 1995.

The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Johnson Gallery, Selections from the Collection 51," May 12, 2009–August 30, 2009.

Levitt, Helen. A Way of Seeing: Photographs of New York. New York: Viking Press, 1965. p. 8.

Hambourg, Maria Morris. The New Vision: Photography between the World Wars, Ford Motor Company Collection at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1989. no. 28.

Levitt, Helen. A Way of Seeing. Durham: Duke University Press, 1989. p. 7.

Levitt, Helen. Helen Levitt, edited by Peter Weiermair. New York: Frankfurter Kunstverein, 1998. p. 7.



This photograph was titled "Three Kids on a Stoop" and dated 1940 in The New Vision.
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