Front / Recto
- Title Brooklyn Bridge in Rainy Weather
- Negative Date 1927
- Print Date 1927–55
- Medium Gelatin silver print
- Dimensions Image 9 1/2 × 7 11/16" (24.2 × 19.5 cm)Sheet 9 11/16 × 7 13/16" (24.6 × 19.8 cm)
- Place Taken New York
- Credit Line Thomas Walther Collection. Gift of Thomas Walther
- MoMA Accession Number 1700.2001
- Copyright © Hirz/Frederic Lewis/Archive Photos/Getty Images
This photograph appears to depict the Brooklyn Bridge reflected onto its own deck, as if on a rainy day. The work, along with three other uncredited views of monumental architecture in New York City, was reproduced in the French journal Vu in March 1928, captioned “Reflecto.” The top two-thirds of the image, with the small figures, comes from one negative, photographed on a dry day. A number of factors indicate manipulation in the darkroom, possibly with a second negative, as the image is not symmetrical. The continuous deck image is visible in the background over the central area of reflected suspension cables; the shadow position and the proportion of the bridge tower and suspension cables are identical in the bottom and the top of the picture, but there are no reflections of the figures or the bright square at center. Retouching is visible in the bottom half of the image but it is not present on the paper itself, suggesting that this is a Copy Print. Fiber analysis indicates that the photographic paper was made between 1927 and 1940; unlike the typical press photograph support, it is a heavy single-weight paper, not highly glossy. Stamps on the verso belong to two New York photo agencies—Frederic Lewis and Advertisers Photo Bureau—and to J. Jay Hirz’s studio.—Hanako Murata
Back / Verso
- Mount Type No mount
- Marks and Inscriptions Stamped in red ink on sheet verso, top center: ADVERTISERS PHOTO BUREAU/232 EAST 42nd STREET-NEW YORK/PHONE MURRAY HILL 2-4739. Stamped in black ink on sheet verso, top center: PHOTO BY/HIRZ. Inscribed in pencil on sheet verso, center: X-27 [oriented upside down with respect to image]. Stamped in blue ink on sheet verso, right: FROM/FREDERIC LEWIS/4 [illegible]/New York City/36 WEST 44th ST/NEW YORK 18, N.Y. Stamped in black ink on sheet verso, center: HIRZ GRAF STUDIOS [GRAF is crossed out, stamp is oriented upside down with respect to image]. Stamped in red ink on sheet verso, bottom center: PLEASE CREDIT/J. JAY HIRZ. Inscribed in pencil on sheet verso, bottom right: TW 870502.
The artist, New York. Frederick Lewis Stock Photos, after 1938 ; to Tom Jacobson, San Diego, c. 1979 ; sold through Sotheby's New York (sale 5043, lot 89) to Thomas Walther, May 6, 1987 ; given to The Museum of Modern Art, New York, 2001.
 Tom Jacobson, letter to Simon Bieling, June 2005. Frederick Lewis Stock Photos was established in 1938.
 MacGill/Walther 2001(4), p. 5; Thomas Walther archival no. TW 870502 on sheet verso; and Sotheby's invoice no. 5571 103, May 6, 1987.
- Format Imperial
- Weight Single weight
- Thickness (mm) 0.19
- UV Fluorescence Recto negative Verso negative
- Fiber Analysis Softwood bleached sulfite 97% Rag 3%
- Material Techniques Developing-out paper
This work was determined to be a gelatin silver print via X-ray fluorescence (XRF) spectrometry.
The following elements have been positively identified in the work, through XRF readings taken from its recto and verso (or from the mount, where the verso was not accessible):
- Recto: Al, P, S, Zn, Sr, Ag, Ba
- Verso: Al, S, Zn, Sr, Ba, Pb
The graphs below show XRF spectra for three areas on the print: two of the recto—from areas of maximum and minimum image density (Dmax and Dmin)—and one of the verso or mount. The background spectrum represents the contribution of the XRF instrument itself. The first graph shows elements identified through the presence of their characteristic peaks in the lower energy range (0 to 8 keV). The second graph shows elements identified through the presence of their characteristic peaks in the higher energy range (8 to 40 keV).
“Reflets photographiques.” Vu 1, no. 2 (March 1928): 49 (as untitled photograph).
Roh, Franz, and Jan Tschichold. Foto-Auge: 76 Fotos der Zeit, pl. 36 (as Brooklynbrücke bei Regenwetter—Le pont de Brooklyn par temps de pluie—Brooklyn Bridge in Rainy Weather). Stuttgart: Akademischer Verlag Dr. Fritz Wedekind & Co., 1929.