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Cable Car, San Francisco

Dorothea Lange, American, 1895 - 1965

Photograph taken in San Francisco, California, United States, North and Central America

1956 (negative); c. 1960 (print)

Gelatin silver print

Image: 15 1/2 x 15 5/16 inches (39.4 x 38.9 cm) Sheet: 19 15/16 x 15 7/8 inches (50.6 x 40.3 cm)

© The Dorothea Lange Collection, Oakland Museum of California, City of Oakland. Gift of Paul S. Taylor.

Curatorial Department:
Prints, Drawings, and Photographs

Object Location:

Currently not on view

Accession Number:

Credit Line:
Purchased with funds contributed by the Friends of the Alfred Stieglitz Center, 2010

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Additional information:
  • PublicationPhiladelphia Museum of Art Handbook (2014 Edition)

    Dorothea Lange’s tightly framed picture of the crossed legs of a woman seated in a cable car conveys volumes about American prosperity and urban life after World War II. An important example of Lange’s later work, the image demonstrates her extraordinary understanding of the expressiveness of the human figure, and its relaxed confidence contrasts with the sense of anxiety visible in her earlier photographs documenting the Great Depression. This print is one of several outstanding examples among the Museum’s holdings of works by American women photographers, including Berenice Abbott, Gertrude Käsebier, and Lee Miller. James Wehn, fromPhiladelphia Museum of Art: Handbook. Philadelphia: Philadelphia Museum of Art, 2014, p. 351.