Crosby Street, Soho, New York

Artist: Thomas Struth (German, born Geldern, 1954)

Date: 1978

Medium: Gelatin silver print

Dimensions: 29.5 x 40.6 cm (11 5/8 x 16 in.)

Classification: Photographs

Credit Line: Gift of Henry S. Hacker, 1982

Accession Number: 1982.1053.1

Rights and Reproduction: © Thomas Struth


Struth began his survey of cities in his native Düsseldorf, Germany, but it was on a scholarship to New York in 1978 that the artist found an ideal combination of conceptual order and practical chaos to hone his rigorous vision. Avoiding subjectivity through a centralized viewpoint and comparative technique, Struth catalogued with clarity and dispassion the unselfconscious structures that characterize a culture-that irreducible mélange of textures, shapes, and the scale of its streets. The results informed the older tradition of urban architectural photography exemplified by Charles Marville with the lessons of recent Minimal and Conceptual Art-the clear-eyed geometries of Sol LeWitt and a concern for social, historical, and institutional context as shown in the work of Michael Asher and Daniel Buren.