In 1940, the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) became the first museum in the country to establish a department devoted to photography, effectively cementing the importance of this art form in the eyes of the world. The artists represented in this series of live and online auctions will be deeply familiar to all students of photography, and their place in photographic history was often established through MoMA’s exhibition program, which helped bring their work to audiences in New York and worldwide. They include Alfred Stieglitz, Edward Steichen, Ansel Adams, Berenice Abbott, Man Ray, Dorothea Lange, Bill Brandt, Henri Cartier-Bresson, Garry Winogrand and Walker Evans, among many others.
The Photographs Day Sale on October 10 at Christie’s New York inaugurates the series of sales with four masterpieces, including two unique Rayographs by Man Ray. Two concurrent online auctions in mid-October are followed by a subsequent series of online auctions in December, 2017, January and April, 2018. Three of the auctions pick up on important themes first outlined by MoMA’s Department of Photography, such as the shift from Pictorialism into Modernism and the role of women in the history of photography. The remaining four sales focus on individual photographers.
MoMA: Henri Cartier-Bresson
MoMA: Pictorialism into Modernism
Photographs, including Property from The Museum of Modern Art
MoMA: Women in Photography
MoMA: Garry Winogrand
MoMA: Bill Brandt
MoMA: Walker Evans
MoMA: Tracing Photography’s History
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