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Old Posted Apr 3, 2017, 7:51 PM
Martin Pal Martin Pal is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2013
Posts: 2,084
Does everyone remember this post [edited it a bit] E_R first presented to NLA about three months ago on January 5, and the discussion
that followed trying to figure out where the photo was actually taken?

Originally Posted by ethereal_reality View Post
'mystery' location / mislabeled photograph?

The recent discussion on sailors made me think of this noirish photograph I happen upon a couple months ago.

It's attributed to the famous street photographer Garry Wynogrand [1950].

But the majority of websites place the location as New York.

Am I way off on this one....

or do you think there's a possibility this is Los Angeles? (it sure feels noirishly L.A. to me)

If it is Los Angeles, I'm still trying to figure out what bridge/viaduct the sailor is walking across.

The discussion by many NLA regulars, with lots of detailed corroborating evidence, finally determined where this photo was taken:

Originally Posted by GaylordWilshire View Post
Someone used the phrase "OCD" here today, and I caught it. Anyway, here's the deal. I've decided that our sailor boy was photographed at the southwest corner of the freeway and Hill Street, not on the overpass itself. I've counted the number of lampposts from the north end of the east-side railing (and that about 14 railing verticals appear between each lamp in the sailor pic and in current views)... the freeway is streaming southeasterly/northwesterly below and behind our boy, with the Brunswig Building north of it.


Since that discussion, I have been in contact with folks from the Fraenkel Gallery in San Francisco, as well as those from SFMOMA, including the archivist and the Assistant Curator of Photography, presenting the evidence for the location of this photo gathered by the NLA sleuths in hopes of having this photo officially labeled properly!

I received an email [edited a bit] this week:


Hi Martin,

Thanks for being in touch.

Here’s the short version: You are absolutely right. My colleague Erin O’Toole was in touch with Leo Rubinfien, who has access to all of Winogrand’s contact sheets. As I’m sure you know, Erin and Leo collaborated on the Winogrand show. Based on further research with Winogrand's contact sheets, Leo confirmed that it is indeed Los Angeles.

Really superlative research by the folks on the Noirish L.A. forum, by the way. Thanks for putting in the work and bringing it to our attention. We are in the process of adjusting all of our databases to reflect this new info.

All the best,

Adam Ryan
Assistant Curator of Photography
San Francisco Museum of Modern Art



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