Gelatin silver print
Image: 29.3 x 22 cm (11 9/16 x 8 11/16 in.); Mounted: 39.5 x 32.5 cm (15 9/16 x 12 13/16 in.)
John L. Severance Fund 2007.143
© Bill Brandt Archive/ Edwynn Houk Gallery
This beggar, possibly blind, kneels and raises his begging bowl to the sky as if awaiting a benediction. Spain was an extremely poor country, but the man’s gesture and pose seem more closely related to past art than to a desire to motivate social change. A key early work by Brandt, this image marks the moment when he began to develop his own style and visual vocabulary. A few years later, he consistently addressed social inequities in a more naturalistic, documentary style.
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