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Copyright
All Rights Reserved ()

Brownstone Houses, 222 Columbia Heights, Brooklyn, New York

Accession Number
1990/2.57

Title
Brownstone Houses, 222 Columbia Heights, Brooklyn, New York

Artist(s)
Walker Evans

Artist Nationality
American (North American)

Object Creation Date
circa 1930

Medium & Support
gelatin silver print on paper

Dimensions
7 15/16 in x 10 in (20.16 cm x 25.4 cm);14 3/8 in x 19 3/8 in (36.51 cm x 49.21 cm)

Credit Line
Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Harry H. Lunn, Jr., in Honor of the Centennial of The Michigan Daily

Label copy
In 1930–31 Walker Evans photographed a number of Victorian houses in New York State and New England and in 1935 he shot antebellum mansions in the South. His sympathetic interest in America’s decaying and disappearing monuments can be found in this image of 1860s Victorian row houses in Brooklyn. The imposing block of buildings overlooking Manhattan, which can be seen in the distance, reflects the values of a past era and the windows are now blank and “sightless.” Berenice Abbott photographed the same block of buildings for Changing New York.
Carole McNamara, Assistant Director for Collections & Exhibitions
on the occasion of the exhibition New York Observed: The Mythology of the City
(July 13 – September 22, 2003)

Subject matter
This photograph features a view of a row of Victorian townhouses in Brooklyn. The rhythmic regularity of the façade is highlighted; the recessed fenestration of the building gains visual interest from the play of sunlight and shade. The composition privileges the autonomy of the buildings and their architectural detail over any context: the scene is tightly framed on the left by the angular L-shape of a street lamp post, while the sharp contour of buildings stand out from the overexposed sky behind.

Physical Description
This photography is a view of a row of Victorian townhouses in Brooklyn, framed on the left by the angular L-shape of a street lamp post.

Primary Object Classification
Photograph

Collection Area
Photography

Rights
If you are interested in using an image for a publication, please visit http://umma.umich.edu/request-image for more information and to fill out the online Image Rights and Reproductions Request Form.

Keywords
Brooklyn
buildings
city
cityscapes (representations)
electric lamps (lighting device forms)
lamp
modern and contemporary art
portfolios
streets
town houses

5 Related Resources

Architecture in Photography 1900-1948
(Part of 6 Learning Collections)
Politics, and Social Reform in the US, 1901-1950
(Part of 6 Learning Collections)
New York City
(Part of 3 Learning Collections)
The City in Photography 1900-1948
(Part of 7 Learning Collections)
The Modern Metropolis
(Part of 7 Learning Collections)

& Author Notes

All Rights Reserved