from Harlem Document project
Siskind took Grocery Store for The Most Crowded Block in the World, a photo series he continued after leaving the Photo League. The project encompassed the square block between 142nd and 143rd Streets and Lenox and Seventh Avenues, essentially extending the work of the Harlem Document. The abundance of canned and dried goods and bottled beverages in this grocery gives the impression of plenty, while the young man’s smile conveys optimism. The name of the store, Our Own Community Grocery and Delicatessen, informs us of the importance of this grocery for its community and their pride in it. In this scene, the commercial text acts as the voice of a group, indicating that the identity of the neighborhood is, in part, defined by its having its own grocery and therefore a degree of economic autonomy.
MD, PHOTOdocument exhibition, March 30, 2012-July 22, 2012
advertising; African American; cities; figures; food; portraits; text
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