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Eugene Atget: "Documents pour artistes" at Museum of Modern Art (MoMA)

02/06/12 through 04/09/12 11 W. 53rd St. Map
212-708-9400
moma.org Ages: All Ages
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This exhibition presents six fresh and highly focused cross sections through the career of master photographer Eugene Atget (French, 1857-1927), drawn exclusively from the Museum's unparalleled holdings of his work. The sign outside Atget's studio read, "Documents pour artistes," -- declaring his modest ambition to create images for other artists to use as source material. This humility belied the visual sophistication and distinctive vision that characterized much of Atget's own work. Whether exploring the urban texture of Paris' fifth arrondissement throughout the first quarter of the 20th century, or the abandoned grandeur of the parks at Sceaux during a remarkable creative outburst in the spring of 1925, Atget captured the essence of his chosen subject through the camera's lens with increasing sensitivity throughout his career. Also featured are his photographs made in the Luxembourg gardens, as well as a concise selection from Atget's sustained investigation of Parisian and rural courtyards. Two final sections of the exhibition highlight Atget's attention to the human figure, a rare but significant aspect of his work, as well as his "Surrealist" photographs of mannequins, store windows, and street fairs that so intrigued the Parisian avant-garde in the 1920s.
 Atget began making photographs in the late 1890s, and the photographs featured in this exhibition span the breadth of his career. However, more than two-thirds of the over 100 works on view were made after World War I when Atget's photographic vision had fully matured, and these remain taut, essential, and surprising pictures to this day.

Venue Description: MoMA's rich and varied collection constitutes one of the most comprehensive and panoramic views into modern art in the world, and has grown to include over 135,000 paintings, prints, photographs, drawings, sculptures, films, and design objects. Visitors to New York City should make sure to stop in and view the collection during their vacations. Founded in 1929 as an educational institution, The Museum of Modern Art is dedicated to being the foremost museum of modern art in the world. Central to The Museum of Modern Art's mission is the encouragement of an ever-deeper understanding and enjoyment of modern and contemporary art by the diverse local, national, and international audiences that it serves. The Museum of Modern Art seeks to create a dialogue between the established and the experimental, the past and the present, in an environment that is responsive to the issues of modern and contemporary art, while being accessible to a public that ranges from scholars to young children. MoMA also has three restaurants on the premises: Café 2, is the museum's sophisticated cafeteria; Terrace 5 is a full-service café where guests can indulge in creative savory selections, delectable pastries and ice cream sundaes, inventive specialty cocktails, micro-brewed beers, and carefully selected wines; and The Modern offers the original, Alsatian-inspired cuisine of Chef Gabriel Kreuther, recently awarded three stars by The New York Times.

Museum Hours: Tues.-Mon., 10:30am-5:30pm; Fri., 10:30am-8pm (free entry 4-8pm for UNIQLO Free Friday Nights).

Upcoming Events

Designing Modern Women, 1890s-1990s - 10/05/13 - 09/21/14

A World of Its Own: Photographic Practices in the Studio - 02/08/14 - 10/05/14

A Collection of Ideas - 02/15/14 - 02/28/15

Sites of Reason: A Selection of Recent Acquisitions - 06/11/14 - 09/28/14

Ray Johnson Designs - 07/02/14 - 09/29/14

Conceptions of Space: Recent Acquisitions in Contemporary Architecture - 07/04/14 - 10/19/14

The Paris of Toulouse-Lautrec: Prints and Posters - 07/26/14 - 03/01/15

Christopher Williams: The Production Line of Happiness - 07/27/14 - 11/02/14

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