Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History



  • [Lette Eisenhauer Ascending Ladder in The Courtyard, a Happening by Allan Kaprow, New York City], 1962
    Lawrence N. Shustak (American, 1926–2003)
    Gelatin silver print; 9 7/16 x 6 1/4 in. (23.9 x 15.9 cm)
    Purchase, Frances Dittmer Gift, 2002 (2002.334)

    [William Mahin, Lette Eisenhauer, and Charles Simon Atop Giant "Mountain" Construction in The Courtyard, a Happening by Allan Kaprow, New York City], 1962
    Lawrence N. Shustak (American, 1926–2003)
    Gelatin silver print; 9 7/16 x 6 1/4 in. (23.9 x 15.9 cm)
    Purchase, Anonymous Gift, 2002 (2002.335)

    [Lette Eisenhauer Descending from Giant "Mountain" Construction After Performance of The Courtyard, a Happening by Allan Kaprow, New York City], 1962
    Lawrence N. Shustak (American, 1926–2003)
    Gelatin silver print; 9 7/16 x 6 1/4 in. (23.9 x 15.9 cm)
    Purchase, Anonymous Gift, 2002 (2002.336)

    These photographs of Kaprow's The Courtyard (1962) were made by Lawrence Shustak, a chronicler of downtown bohemia who happened upon the scene with photographer and darkroom sharer Robert Frank. Composed of discordant noise, circling bicyclists, tires swinging from windows, and showers of spot-lit, glittering tin foil, The Courtyard was a modern-day fable (set in a hotel for transients on Bleecker Street) showing the ascension of a goddess in the guise of a teenage girl, dressed in a nightgown and carrying a transistor radio blaring the latest hits. During the piece, she slowly made her way through the audience and climbed a ladder up a giant mountainlike sculpture in the middle of the courtyard. Striking cheesecake poses for a pair of paparazzi on a mattress (the fan attaining the immortality of the starlet), the girl was then swallowed up by another mountain descending from the rooftop—a deus ex machina for our media age.

    These three images in this group were reproduced in Allan Kaprow's influential compendium of avant-garde performance from around the world entitled Assemblage-Environments-Happenings (1966).

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  • [Lette Eisenhauer Ascending Ladder in The Courtyard, a Happening by Allan Kaprow, New York City], 1962
    Lawrence N. Shustak (American, 1926–2003)
    Gelatin silver print; 9 7/16 x 6 1/4 in. (23.9 x 15.9 cm)
    Purchase, Frances Dittmer Gift, 2002 (2002.334)

    [William Mahin, Lette Eisenhauer, and Charles Simon Atop Giant "Mountain" Construction in The Courtyard, a Happening by Allan Kaprow, New York City], 1962
    Lawrence N. Shustak (American, 1926–2003)
    Gelatin silver print; 9 7/16 x 6 1/4 in. (23.9 x 15.9 cm)
    Purchase, Anonymous Gift, 2002 (2002.335)

    [Lette Eisenhauer Descending from Giant "Mountain" Construction After Performance of The Courtyard, a Happening by Allan Kaprow, New York City], 1962
    Lawrence N. Shustak (American, 1926–2003)
    Gelatin silver print; 9 7/16 x 6 1/4 in. (23.9 x 15.9 cm)
    Purchase, Anonymous Gift, 2002 (2002.336)

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