Bed, Tenant Farmer's House, Hale County, Alabama

Walker Evans, American, 1903 - 1975

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negative 1936; print by 1973

Gelatin silver print

Overall: 8 × 10 in. (20.3 × 25.4 cm)

Hood Museum of Art, Dartmouth: Purchased through a gift from the Class of 1935

PH.973.6

Geography

Place Made: United States, North America

Period

20th century

Object Name

Photograph

Research Area

Photograph

Not on view

Course History

SART 29, Photography I, Virginia Beahan, Spring 2012

SART 30, SART 75, Photography II, III, Virginia Beahan, Spring 2013

SART 29, Photography I, Virginia Beahan, Summer 2013

SART 29, Photography I, Virginia Beahan, Winter 2014

SART 29, Photography I, Virginia Beahan, Summer 2014

SART 17.9, The Photographer as Activist: Making Art Inspired by the Hood Museum's Collection, Virginia Beahan, Winter 2015

GEOG 17, Geopolitics and Third World Development, Patricia Lopez, Spring 2015

GEOG 17, Geopolitics and Third World Development, Patricia Lopez, Spring 2015

SART 29, Photography I, Virginia Beahan, Summer 2019

ARTH 48.02, History of Photography, Katie Hornstein, Winter 2020

SART 29/SART 75, Photography 1/Photography 3, Virginia Beahan, Winter 2020

Exhibition History

A Space for Dialogue 104, Southern Gothic, Abigail Smith, Class of 2023, Conroy Intern, Alvin P. Gutman Gallery, Hood Museum of Art, Dartmouth College, Hanover, New Hampshire, January 8–February 27, 2022.

A Space for Dialogue 33, Picturing Family in "The South", Legacies of the American Civil War, Sophia Hutson, Class of 2006, Kathryn and Caroline Conroy Curatorial Intern, Main Lobby, Hood Museum of Art, Dartmouth College, Hanover, New Hampshire, August 29-October 22, 2006.

Homage to Walker Evans, Lower Jewett Corridor, Hopkins Center Art Galleries, Dartmouth College, Hanover, New Hampshire, May 1975.

Palmer Lounge, Hopkins Center Art Galleries, Dartmouth College, Hanover, New Hampshire, November 1973.

Remembrance of Things Past, Prints and Photographs from the Class of 1935 Memorial Fund, Harrington Gallery, Hood Museum of Art, Dartmouth College, Hanover, New Hampshire, June 9-September 2, 2000. [Curated by Jennifer Reily, Class of 2000, Class of 1954 Intern for the 65th Reunion of the Class of 1935]

The angled placement of the bed in this photograph, set in the home of Floyd and Allie Mae Burroughs (see label for photograph above), differs from James Agee’s written description of it and the bed beside it as “set parallel, their heads near the rear wall.” The discrepancy suggests that Evans moved the bed to the corner and rotated it in order to give the composition greater visual interest. Some viewers might disapprove of a so-called “documentary” photographer altering the arrangement of his or her subject to the slightest degree. Others might feel that such an intervention is well within an artist’s purview, even if s/he is working in a “documentary” style. As it turns out, Evans often tweaked the arrangement of household items before he photographed them. He hoped that the sparse beauty and order of such modest interiors would engage audiences aesthetically and heighten their sympathy for the inhabitants.

The Image Impressed, Lower Jewett Corridor, The Hopkins Center, Dartmouth College, Hanover, New Hampshire, January 25-July, 1985.

The Photographer's Eye, Harrington Gallery Teaching Exhibition, SArt 29 & 30, Hood Museum of Art, Dartmouth College, Hanover, New Hampshire, May 8-June 13, 2004.

Walker Evans and 1930s America, Israel Sack Gallery [American Works on Paper wall], Hood Museum of Art, Dartmouth College, Hanover, New Hampshire, January 20-March 16, 2014.

Provenance

The artist; sold to present collection, 1973.

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