Edward Weston, the photographer Jerome Hill and the family of the present owner of this print were closely associated during the 1930s. As an important patron of Edward Weston, Hill purchased ten photographs from Weston for a total price of $150. Among several vegetable images, Hill purchased Bananas, 1930.
By 1927, Weston was working with this new subject and was 'torn between two new loves - bananas and shells'. He returned to the subject again in 1930 with renewed vigor, 'The new banana negative is great! A bunch of five standing on end, still joined at the top, - and how beautiful the fruit is at the point of radiation from the main stalk - the concave side to the camera. The three centre bananas are perfectly straight, the two outer ones swell out from the top, then almost straighten to cut diagonally across all but the centre fruit. It is a classic conception and I am proud to have made it.' (Daybooks II, pp. 13, 171)
Prints of this image were exhibited at Delphic Studios, New York, 1930; Harvard Society for Contemporary Arts, 1930; and Morgan Camera Shop, Los Angeles, 1939. Prints of Bananas, 1930 are included in two museum collections: The J. Paul Getty Museum, Santa Monica and the Museum of Art and History, Santa Cruz. (Conger, fig. 597/1930)