Gelatin silver print, printed 1970s
Image: 47.6 x 31.1 cm (18 3/4 x 12 1/4 in.); Paper: 50.2 x 40.6 cm (19 3/4 x 16 in.)
Anonymous Gift 1984.213
© Robert Frank
When this photograph was taken, Swiss-born Robert Frank had lived in the United States nine years. He included it in his groundbreaking book The Americans, comprising candid images of mundane aspects of American life that many considered unflattering to his new country. Here, the festive atmosphere usually associated with a holiday celebration is absent. Rather, a tattered, translucent flag, a boy's dismal expression, and the grainy, grayness of the image contribute to feelings of dullness and alienation.
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