Neon signs, Chicago, 1939/2002

Photo: Courtesy of the artist / Andrea Rosen Gallery, New York

Fujicolor crystal archive print
27.9 x 35.6 cm

Using long lasting exposure times, Moholy-Nagy captured the metropolitan light spectacle in bizarre, almost graphic like emanations of moving headlights grounded in deepest black. At the New Bauhaus in Chicago, this kind of "freestyle" composing of urban light displays was to become a popular experiment among teachers at the Light Workshop at the School of Design. It was exciting to extend or even to destroy the boundaries of traditional representative depiction in color photograph using what Moholy-Nagy already had called upon the "New Vision's" protagonists to do in 1925: The photographer must think of himself as a "lightist" whose most important material for design and expression is light, with all its effects. – Jeannine Fiedler

*1895 in Bácsborsód, Hungary I † 1946 in Chicago, USA