Equivalent

Alfred Stieglitz

1864 - 1946

Equivalent

1926

Gelatin silver print
3 5/8 x 4 5/8 in. (9.2 x 11.7 cm)
Framed: 16 3/4 x 20 3/4 x 1 1/8 in. (42.5 x 52.7 x 2.9 cm)

Stieglitz’s fascination with capturing clouds began as early as 1888. Unfortunately, negative plates at the time were overly sensitive to the blue spectrum of light and prohibited him from producing a quality negative for printing. By 1922 photographic technology had corrected the sensitivity issue and allowed him to revisit his interest and explore the sky in more than 200 images.

His series of Equivalents breaks free from conventional photographic techniques and subject matter. By turning his lens upward instead of forward, the elements of disorientation and detachment from the physical world allowed him to capture a fleeting experience often overlooked. Stieglitz likened the project to the visualization of music, but also saw it as a manifestation of his most profound life experiences. The variation of tone, pattern, and mood from each image are open for personal interpretation and connection.