Coltrane and Elvin, New York

Image Not Available Due to Copyright Restrictions

Exhibition Label
DeCarava photographed the greats of New York’s jazz scene throughout a career that spanned over half a century. He often used light and shadow to create order and set a mood in these portraits. The black-and-white images are intimate and capture the sublime energy of America’s preeminent jazz musicians among them John Coltrane, Elvin Jones, Duke Ellington, and Billie Holiday. In 1962, DeCarava compiled these photographs, along with his own poetry, into a handbound volume called “The Sound I Saw,” which was published in 2001.

African American Art: Harlem Renaissance, Civil Rights Era, and Beyond, 2012
Coltrane and Elvin, New York
1960, printed 1982
On View
Not on view.
sheet: 10 7/8 x 13 7/8 in. (27.6 x 35.2 cm.)
Credit Line

Smithsonian American Art Museum

Museum purchase made possible by Henry L. Milmore

  • Portrait male – Jones, Elvin
  • Performing arts – music – drum
  • Performing arts – music – voice
  • Cityscape – New York – New York
  • Portrait male – Coltrane, John
Object Number
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