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Brooklyn Bridge

The Brooklyn Bridge was hailed as a marvel of American engineering ingenuity. When it was built in 1883, its two towers were the tallest structures in the Western Hemisphere. Photographer Walker Evans turned its bold form and sweeping lines into a classic American image, both an icon of modernity and a monument that belongs to history.

To Joseph Stella, this structure was the “shrine containing all the efforts of the new civilization of America.” His Futurist rendition of the Brooklyn Bridge was inspired by a night alone on its promenade, surrounded by New York’s noises and pulsating colors, feeling both hemmed in and spiritually uplifted by the city.

Picturing America has been made possible in part by the National Endowment for the Humanities: Because democracy demands wisdom.
Any views, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed on this website do not necessarily represent those of the National Endowment for the Humanities.