Apr 7, 2017
Apr 7, 2017

The Coconut Factory

The Coconut Factory

c. 1930 (printed 1979)

Ralph Steiner

(American, 1899–1986)

Gelatin silver print

Image: 12.8 x 9.9 cm (5 1/16 x 3 7/8 in.); Paper: 12.8 x 9.9 cm (5 1/16 x 3 7/8 in.)

Gift of Murray and Therese Weiss 2016.316



Between 1900 and 1929, industrialization and rapid economic growth led to the creation of numerous factories. But many of them went idle or reduced their output and work schedule during the Depression. Steiner was born in Cleveland to a working-class Czech family. Like Doris Ulmann, whose work is nearby, he began as a fine art photographer in the Pictorialist style. However, soft focus and romanticized views soon gave way in his work to modernist formalism and sharp-eyed urban views such as this.

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