A Walk through Astoria and Other Places in Queens: Photographs by Rudy Burckhardt

Jun 29–Nov 4, 2002


Rudy Burckhardt. Untitled, from the unique album An Afternoon in Astoria. 1940. Gelatin silver print, 3 9/16 × 3 1/16″ (9.1 × 7.8 cm). The Museum of Modern Art, New York. Gift of CameraWorks, Inc., and purchase. © The Estate of Rudolph Burckhardt

In the early 1940s, Swiss-born photographer and experimental filmmaker Rudy Burckhardt focused his photography on finding beauty in the uncelebrated and untidy details of life in and around Astoria, Queens. This exhibition brings together the two private, unpublished albums that Burckhardt made from these photographs. For the first time, Burckhardt’s carefully constructed, filmlike sequences—the unique intersection of his work in photography and film—are presented for public enjoyment. This work inspired the poet Edwin Denby to write sonnets about Queens, several of which were pasted into one of Burckhardt’s albums and are included in the exhibition.

Organized by Sarah Hermanson Meister, Associate Curator, Research and Collections, Department of Photography.

This exhibition is generously supported by the Lily Auchincloss Foundation, Inc. in honor of Agnes Gund.

Additional funding is provided by the Robert and Joyce Menschel Family Foundation.


  • An afternoon in Astoria Out of print, 44 pages
  • Press release 2 pages


Installation images

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