Untitled, Vicinity of Attica, New York
1957 Minor White Born: Minneapolis, Minnesota 1908 Died: Boston, Massachusetts 1976 gelatin silver print sheet and image: 3 3/4 x 6 3/8 in. (9.5 x 16.1 cm) Smithsonian American Art Museum Gift of Bernie Stadiem 2003.35 Not currently on view
“Surfaces reveal inner states – cameras record surfaces. Confronted with the world of surfaces in nature, man, and photographs, I must somehow be a kind of microscope by which the underlying forces of spirit are observed and extended to others.” – Minor White, 1969
Minor White continued Alfred Stieglitz’s tradition of treating photographs as “equivalents,” visual metaphors for feelings or psychological states. His lyrical studies of natural forms encourage the viewer to look beyond the physical appearance of objects and seek a spiritual meaning in the image. In this way, viewers use the photograph as a mirror to gain insight into their own psychologies.
This unusually small untitled print invites intimate inspection. With its ambiguous content and self-contained composition, the photograph borders on complete abstraction. The illusion of movement is created through the dynamic arrangement of varied circular shapes, which are most likely air bubbles trapped in frozen water.
A Democracy of Images: Photographs from the Smithsonian American Art Museum, 2013
Landscape - New York - Attica
photography - photoprint