Photo © President and Fellows of Harvard College
Identification and Creation
Object Number
M23939.A-B
People
Lorna Simpson, American (Brooklyn, NY born 1960)
Title
Backdrops Circa 1940's
Classification
Prints
Work Type
print
Date
1998
Culture
American
Persistent Link
https://hvrd.art/o/197407
Physical Descriptions
Medium
Screen print on two sheets of thick white felt
Technique
Screen print
Dimensions
66.6 x 85.2 cm (26 1/4 x 33 9/16 in.)
Inscriptions and Marks
  • inscription: verso in pencil on left and right panel: 5/35
  • inscription: right panel: Lorna Simpson 98
  • inscription: l.l left panel printed: ...seated in photographers studio, cira 1940's
  • inscription: l.l right panel printed: ...standing while singing on film set, cira 1940's
Provenance
[G. W. Einstein Company, Inc., New York, New York], sold; to Harvard University Art Museums, September 8, 1998.
State, Edition, Standard Reference Number
Edition
5/35
Acquisition and Rights
Credit Line
Harvard Art Museums/Fogg Museum, Margaret Fisher Fund
Copyright
© Lorna Simpson
Accession Year
1998
Object Number
M23939.A-B
Division
Modern and Contemporary Art
Contact
am_moderncontemporary@harvard.edu
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Descriptions
Commentary
In this diptych Simpson represents a fragment of Lena Horne and a full view of an unidentified black woman. The backdrops are as telling as the figures; and this seems to carry through the intentions of Simpson's larger installations, which are often all backdrop, with figures and actions implied only through captions and titles.
Exhibition History

Seeing Is Believing: A History of Photography, Harvard Art Museums, Cambridge, 09/04/2012 - 01/19/2013

This record has been reviewed by the curatorial staff but may be incomplete. Our records are frequently revised and enhanced. For more information please contact the Division of Modern and Contemporary Art at am_moderncontemporary@harvard.edu