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In this photograph of a highway corner in West Virginia, signs proliferate and dominate, with no visible person to read them. The gas station, the traveler's last stop out of town, anchors the corner, a solid brick building that proudly reveals its nationalistic bent with the bold announcement that "AMERICAN GAS" is sold there. A formidable, solid telephone pole cuts vertically through the frame in the foreground while another peeks out from behind it in the distance. Wires busily intersect the sky, and a large, round sign for the telephone company announces the communication system. Despite all the evidence of devices to keep people connected, the image projects an ironic sense of emptiness and desolation.

Details

  • Title: Highway Corner, Reedsville, West Virginia
  • Creator: Walker Evans
  • Date Created: 1935
  • Location Created: Reedsville, West Virginia, United States
  • Physical Dimensions: 25.4 × 20.6 cm (10 × 8 1/8 in.)
  • Type: Print
  • External Link: Find out more about this object on the Museum website.
  • Medium: Gelatin silver print
  • Terms of Use: Open Content
  • Number: 84.XM.129.5
  • Culture: American
  • Credit Line: The J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles
  • Creator Display Name: Walker Evans (American, 1903 - 1975)
  • Classification: Photographs (Visual Works)

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