The Sherry and Roy DeCarava Archives

Look for the DeCarava photographs in
Witness: Art and Civil Rights in the Sixties
March 7 - July 6, 2014 at Brooklyn Museum of Art


Marchers, talking, 1963.

Woman in sandals, 1963.

See DeCarava's images from
Blues for Smoke:

"DeCarava's pictures...are suffused with a kind of lyrical haze, a propensity for dim light and shadow, and suggest a language of the self right in tone, feeling, and abstraction. A series of portraits of John Coltrane (1961) show the legendary saxophonist blowing on a darkened stage. Ecstatic, tortured, spiritual, his figure seems to blast out or repudiate the suffocating Hallway (1953) or the broken city block at 117th Street (1951). Later photographs such as Silver fence (1983) and Curved branch (1994) dwell on patterns found in the urban landscape with an "allover" attention to growth and diffusion. These works recall the cosmic mingling of abstract form and figuration…”

Bennett Simpson
Curator, Blues for Smoke