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October 31, 2017

The Face of New York in the 1940s Through Andreas Feininger's Lens

Born in Paris, one of the world's most prolific photographers, Andreas Bernhard Lyonel Feininger (1906-1999) was an American photographer and a writer on photographic technique. He was noted for his dynamic black-and-white scenes of Manhattan and for studies of the structures of natural objects.

Feininger was a pioneer both visually and technically. He was educated in German public schools and at the Weimar Bauhaus. His interest in photography developed while he was studying architecture, and he worked as both architect and photographer in Germany for four years, until political circumstances made it impossible. Feininger moved to Paris, where he worked in Le Corbusier's studio, and then to Stockholm. There he established his own photographic firm specializing in architectural and industrial photography.

New York in the 1940s by Andreas Feininger

With the outbreak of war in 1939, Feininger moved to New York, where he was a freelance photographer for the Black Star Agency and then for the U.S. Office of War Information. After working on a retainer basis, he was a staff photographer at LIFE from 1943 to 1962, and there established his reputation.

Feininger subsequently concentrated on his personal work, exhibiting and publishing extensively. he was renowned as a teacher via his publications that combine practical experience with clarity of presentation.

42nd Street, New York, circa 1940

Apollo Theatre, NYC, 1940

Central Park, NYC, 1940

Futon Street, New York, 1940

Lower Manhattan seen from Brooklyn, circa 1940

New York City, 1940

 Ninth Avenue el, NYC, circa 1940

The Bowery under the shadows of the Third Avenue el, circa 1940

The cast-iron facade of the Potter Building, Nassau Street, Manhattan, circa 1940

German shop on East 86th Street, 1941

Lower Manhattan, 1941

Cities Service Building on Pine Street, New York, 1942

Midtown Manhattan seen from New Jersey 1942

Statue of Liberty, 1942

Times Square, 1942

New York City, 1943

Crossing of Broadway and Fifth Avenue, at 23rd Street, in center the Flatiron Building, April 1944

ITT Building and 3rd Avenue, May 1944

New Yorkers crowd Broadway below a large billboard depicting actress Marlene Dietrich, October 1944

Times Square at night, 1946

The Brooklyn Bridge arches toward Lower Manhattan, 1948

Brooklyn Army Base, 1949

Coney Island, July 4, New York, 1949


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