“GREAT EVENTS AND EVERYDAY HAPPENINGS WITH EQUAL SYMPATHY”: VINTAGE GELATIN SILVER PRINT, HITACHI CITY CHILDREN, FROM W. EUGENE SMITH’S PRIVATE COLLECTION
SMITH, W. Eugene. Photograph. Hitachi, Ltd.—Hitachi City Children. No place, circa 1961. Vintage gelatin silver print (measures 10 by 15-1/2 inches), matted (total measures 20 by 16 inches), Smith’s estate inkstamp on print verso, label on mat verso. $4200.
Vintage gelatin silver print from the estate of W. Eugene Smith, his evocative image of Japanese children at play in Hitachi City, taken circa 1961 and chosen by Smith for his 1963 photobook Japan… A Chapter of Image. This print with Smith’s estate inkstamp on the verso was featured in a highly praised 1996 New York gallery exhibit.
Photographed in the year from 1961-2 while on a project for Japan’s industrial giant Hitachi, W. Eugene Smith’s evocative image captures Japanese children at play against a horizon of Hitachi City’s mountainous buildings. With one child vibrant and active, two others solemnly facing the camera, Smith explores a dynamic contrast of light and shadow, of horizontal lines and stark verticals, of movement and repose. Chosen by Smith for inclusion in his subsequent photobook Japan… A Chapter of Image (36), this gelatin silver print evokes the basic “strength of Smith’s essentially romantic vision. He recorded great events and everyday happenings with equal sympathy and formal command” (New York Times). Print with inkstamp on the verso reading “Photograph by W. Eugene Smith: This authenticated photograph was in the private collection of W. Eugene Smith at the time of his death—October 15, 1978.” Mat with small label on verso from New York’s Lowinsky Gallery, which displayed this print and others from the estate in a 1996 exhibit.
Small bit of tape to verso of bright print in fine condition.