Streets of New York

R. Burckhardt. Water-pipe. 1939. Photo. Metropolitan Museum, New York

Metropolitan Museum continues the exhibition of photos by Rudy Burckhardt (1914-1999). The exhibition New York, N. Why?: Photographs by Rudy Burckhardt, 1937-1940 which will be held till 4 January 2009 includes 67 black-and-white works recognized as the best photos of New York for the whole history of photography.

Rudolf (Rudi) Burckhardt was born in Basel (Switzerland) in a family of famous historian and philosopher of culture Jacob Burckhardt. In the late 1920s he began to travel regularly to New York but in 1935 he finally settled in the United States. With a help of his friend critic and poet Edwin Denbi, Burckhardt joined the creative circles of the city in a short time. Soon he became a full member of New York City Schools among such artists as Jane Freilicher and Alex Katz. In 1950-1960 Burckhardt worked as a chief photographer of the legendary ArtNews magazine. During these years he created photographs of Willem de Kooning, Mark Rothko, Joan Mitchell and many other prominent artists of the era.

As a miscellaneous man Burckhardt tried various roles – painter, graphic artist, film director. However photographs made him famous.

The exhibition in the Metropolitan Museum represents a series of views of New York. The image of this city was in the Burckhardt’s work throughout his creative life, not only in photographs, but also in watercolor and short films. The object of the photographer were people, showcases, transport and even advertising signs. Burckhardt photographed the city in its daily life, in the simplest points and scenes full of a special atmosphere of energy and chaotic beauty of New York.
The exhibition New York, N. Why?: Photographs by Rudy Burckhardt, 1937-1940 includes a series of pictures made in the 1940s. This album belonged to the author for a long time. In 1972 the album was bought by Metropolitan Museum.

The exhibition is opened till January 4.

Published in: on January 15, 2009 at 2:23 am  Leave a Comment  
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