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Catalog Data

Photograph by:
James Kollar  Search this
Subject of:
Laura Cathrell, 1914 - 1999  Search this
Unidentified Man or Men  Search this
2013. silver and photographic gelatin on photographic paper
2013. silver and photographic gelatin on photographic paper
H x W (2013. Image): 7 7/16 × 9 9/16 in. (18.9 × 24.3 cm)
H x W (2013. Sheet): 8 × 9 15/16 in. (20.3 × 25.3 cm)
H x W (2013. Image): 7 9/16 × 9 5/8 in. (19.2 × 24.4 cm)
H x W (2013. Sheet): 8 1/16 × 10 1/4 in. (20.4 × 26 cm)
gelatin silver prints
Place made:
New York City, New York, United States, North and Central America
early 20th-mid 20th century
Two identical silver gelatin prints depicting a black-and-white composite image of three (3) unidentified men and Laura Cathrell dressed in theatrical costumes. Cathrell stands left of center, in profile, with her torso turned towards the men on the right side of the image. She is wearing a dark toned, cropped, short sleeve blouse, a stripped skirt with ruffles along the hem, and a tall hat with a large feather plume extending from the top of the hat. She is depicted looking down towards the man on the far left. He is wearing an open shirt, laced, with large dark and light bands on the sleeves, white pants, sandals, and a brimmed straw hat decorated with diagonal stripes on the edge of the brim. He is kneeling with a conga drum held on his upper thighs. His hands are poised above the drumhead, which faces to the left edge of the image. The drum is decorated with geometric bands. On the right side of Cathrell are two (2) additional men standing, both looking towards her. Both wear outfits similar to the man kneeling. The man on the left is holding maracas in both hands and is facing Cathrell. The man on the far right stands with his back to the other performers and his torso turned to the right edge of the image. Partially cut off white text, printed in the negative, in the bottom right corner reads, [JAMES KOLL[ÁR / RADIO CITY, N.Y.]]. There are no inscriptions on the front or back of the image.
Objects depicting racist and/or stereotypical imagery or language may be offensive and disturbing, but the NMAAHC aims to include them in the Collection to present and preserve the historical context in which they were created and used. Objects of this type provide an important historical record from which to study and evaluate racism.
African American  Search this
Entertainers  Search this
Music  Search this
Nightlife  Search this
Photography  Search this
Stereotypes  Search this
Theatre  Search this
Credit Line:
Collection of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture
Object number:
Restrictions & Rights:
Unknown - Restrictions Possible
Rights assessment and proper usage is the responsibility of the user.
See more items in:
National Museum of African American History and Culture Collection
Collection title:
The Laura Cathrell Show-Down Magazine Collection
Media Arts-Photography
Racist and Stereotypical Objects
Data Source:
National Museum of African American History and Culture