Posted on November 29, 2022 | No Comments
A photograph by Ruth Bernhard
Hand in Hand. 1956, printed 1976 by Ruth Bernhard
9 1/2″ x 7 1/2″ Gelatin silver print on Agfa Portriga Rapid
Edition of 15; this print is the original artist’s proof
Signed, titled, and numbered
This image was captured by Ruth Bernhard shortly after she moved to San Francisco. Bernhard teamed up with Melvin Van Peebles, a then 25-year-old cable car gripman, as he wrote his first book. Their collaboration resulted in the photo essay The Big Heart, a love letter to San Francisco’s cable cars and the people who ride them.
Over the course of his career, Melvin Van Peebles was an author, actor, filmmaker, writer, and composer. When he and Ruth Bernhard first met, he had a B.A. in literature and had recently finished serving a term with U.S. Air Force. According to the author, it was a cable car passenger who suggested that he should become a filmmaker.
Melvin Van Peebles passed away in September 2021.
This original photograph, one of the last ever to be printed by Ruth Bernhard comes from her personal copy of The Gift of the Commonplace portfolio.
The same pair of hands is also featured in:
Mr. Reilly and Friend at Fellowship Church, San Francisco, 1956
The Gift of the Commonplace. 1976
Please inquire for details.