Kitchen Wall, Alabama Farmstead
1936, printed 1974 Walker Evans Born: St. Louis, Missouri 1903 Died: New Haven, Connecticut 1975 Double Elephant Press (Publisher) Richard Benson (Printer) John Deeks (Printer) gelatin silver print sheet and image: 9 3/8 x 12 in. (23.9 x 30.5 cm) Smithsonian American Art Museum Gift of Lee and Maria Friedlander 2006.13.1.8 Not currently on view
During the summer of 1936, Walker Evans joined writer James Agee in rural Alabama to work on a magazine assignment on cotton farming. Evans and Agee met with three tenant farm families and documented details of their experiences. The result, which the magazine declined to publish, was released as the book Let Us Now Praise Famous Men in 1941. It contains some of the most iconic and contentious photographs to document the Great Depression.
Kitchen Wall, Alabama Farmstead reads like a modern novel. Every crack in the wood, every speck of paint tells part of the story. Evans drew special attention to the scarcity of cooking tools at the family’s disposal. These everyday utensils provide a metaphor for the struggle to meet basic needs.
A Democracy of Images: Photographs from the Smithsonian American Art Museum, 2013
Architecture Interior - domestic - kitchen
Architecture - farm
Landscape - Alabama
photography - photoprint
paper - kodak polycontrast
About Walker Evans
Born: St. Louis, Missouri 1903 Died: New Haven, Connecticut 1975
About Double Elephant Press
About Richard Benson
Born: Newport, Rhode Island 1943
About John Deeks