Aaron Siskind. Martha's Vineyard. 1946

Aaron Siskind Martha's Vineyard 1946

  • Not on view

Siskind carefully framed his subjects to foreground found juxtapositions—here, that of seaweed and sand—and to emphasize the small dramas they embody. Sand fills the image, creating what the artist called “a flat unyielding space,” without markers of scale and location, on which seaweed twists, turns, and knots in calligraphic gestures. Reflecting on these photographs, Siskind explained, “For the first time in my life, subject matter, as such, had ceased to be of primary importance. Instead, I found myself involved in the relationships of these objects, so much so that these pictures turned out to be deeply moving and personal experiences.”

Gallery label from Abstract Expressionist New York, October 3, 2010-April 25, 2011.
Gelatin silver print
6 × 8 1/4" (15.2 × 21.6 cm)
Anonymous Fund
Object number
© 2020 Estate of Aaron Siskind

If you would like to reproduce an image of a work of art in MoMA’s collection, or an image of a MoMA publication or archival material (including installation views, checklists, and press releases), please contact Art Resource (publication in North America) or Scala Archives (publication in all other geographic locations).

All requests to license audio or video footage produced by MoMA should be addressed to Scala Archives at firenze@scalarchives.com. Motion picture film stills or motion picture footage from films in MoMA’s Film Collection cannot be licensed by MoMA/Scala. For licensing motion picture film footage it is advised to apply directly to the copyright holders. For access to motion picture film stills please contact the Film Study Center. More information is also available about the film collection and the Circulating Film and Video Library.

If you would like to reproduce text from a MoMA publication or moma.org, please email text_permissions@moma.org. If you would like to publish text from MoMA’s archival materials, please fill out this permission form and send to archives@moma.org.


This record is a work in progress. If you have additional information or spotted an error, please send feedback to digital@moma.org.