Weir's Close - Edinburgh

Alvin Langdon Coburn (British, Boston, Massachusetts 1882–1966 Wales)
Platinum print
27.8 x 22.2 cm. (10 15/16 x 8 3/4 in.)
Credit Line:
Alfred Stieglitz Collection, 1933
Accession Number:
Not on view
In September 1905 Coburn took a break from the portrait project he was pursuing in London and visited J. Craig Annan in Edinburgh. There, he saw not only Annan’s work but also photographs by the pioneering painter/photographer team of David Octavius Hill and Robert Adamson—portraits and city views taken in 1840s Edinburgh and originally printed in shades of ruddy brown with strong contrasts of light and shadow, an aesthetic echoed in Weir’s Close. In his 1966 autobiography, Coburn recalled another influence on such pictures: Robert Louis Stevenson’s Edinburgh: Picturesque Notes (1879). "For over fifty years I have followed lovingly in his footsteps, endeavouring to see it as I thought he saw it."
Alfred Stieglitz

The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "The Collection of Alfred Stieglitz," May 18, 1978–July 16, 1978.

The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Pictorialism in New York, 1900-1915," February 10, 1998–May 31, 1998.

The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Photographic Treasures from the Collection of Alfred Stieglitz," October 13, 2011–February 26, 2012.

Madrid. Fundación MAPFRE. "Alvin Langdon Coburn," December 11, 2014–February 15, 2015.

Stieglitz, Alfred, ed. Camera Work: A Photographic Quarterly 15 (July 1906). no. I.

Stevenson, Robert Louis. Edinburgh: Picturesque Notes. London: Rupert Hart-Davis Ltd, 1954. no. 11.

Naef, Weston J. The Collection of Alfred Stieglitz: Fifty Pioneers of Modern Photography. Studio Book. 1st ed. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1978. no. 126.

Roberts, Pamela Glasson. Alvin Langdon Coburn. Madrid: Fundación MAPFRE, 2014. no. 70, p. 153.