The Black and White Years 1948-1958

The black and white pictures of the early years denote the new ideas put forward by the Photo League: a documentary and social approach determine the practice of its members. Cuchi White took a part, under her maiden name Katherine Ann White, in the final exhibition of the movement in New York in 1949.

With these first shots captured in the streets of New York at the end of the 1940s, then in Italy and France from 1952, she set up her visual vocabulary and built the foundations of her work to come. Her work had adopted the young American photographer’s lessons in the choice of the subjects and their role in space. Some patterns, like visual ‘rituals’, would later characterise her whole body of work: the bodies’ presence, the walls’ liveliness, the geometry of the architectures, the metamorphosis of the real in a game of light and shadow.