Purchase, Gift of Ford Motor Company and John C. Waddell, by exchange, 2011
Not on view
Frank’s series From the Bus, made while he was organizing his work for the landmark publication The Americans (1959), extended his exploration of the boundaries of street photography and anticipated his precipitous turn toward film in the 1960s. For Frank, an ordinary New York City bus became a mobile cinema of everyday life. With a handheld Leica camera, he captured non-narrative stills of the city’s bustling inhabitants, which nonetheless convey the impressions of both a moment having just past and a movement in "real time," each operating in parallel sequence. With the cadence of a Beat poet, Frank wrote of the series: The Bus carries me thru the City, I look out the window, I look at the people on the street, the Sun and the Traffic Lights. It has to do with desperation and endurance—I have always felt that about living in New York. Compassion and probably some understanding for New York’s Concrete and its people, walking . . . waiting . . . standing up . . . holding hands . . . the summer of 1958. The gray around the picture to heighten the feeling of seeing from the inside to the outside. I like to see them one after another. It’s a ride bye and not a flashy-backy.
Inscription: Signed and inscribed in ink, recto BLC, BRC: "From the Bus", "R. Frank."; artist's stamps in ink with incriptions in ink and pencil, on verso, BLC, BRC: "COPYRIGHT Robert Frank 1978 // ALL RIGHTS RESERVED", "[in box] ROBERT FRANK ARCHIVE // From the Bus NYC // 47"
The artist; [Arthur Penn and Paul Katz], by 1978; [...]; (Phillips de Pury & Company, New York, Sale NY40111, Lot 149, April 9, 2011)
The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Johnson Gallery, Selections from the Collection 57," August 22, 2011–January 9, 2012.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Street," March 5, 2013–May 27, 2013.