The in Los Angeles and the in Washington, D.C., have announced major gifts of photography from the collection of Daniel Greenberg and Susan Steinhauser.
The gift to the Getty comprises three hundred and eighty-six works by seventeen photographers, including some of the most influential American practitioners of the art in the twentieth century, as well as a pledge of an additional twenty-three photographs. Highlights of the gift include the first works by Ruth Bernhard and Eudora Welty to enter the museum's collection, twenty-seven works by Imogen Cunningham, and Chris Killip's "Isle of Man" twelve-print portfolio. "This incredibly generous donation will complement and strengthen the Getty’s holdings of several major photographers and provide a rich trove of images from which to organize future exhibitions," said Getty director Timothy Potts.
The National Gallery will receive a hundred and forty-three gelatin silver prints by Dorothea Lange, with a pledge of ten additional Lange photographs. With the contributions, the museum will become one of the world’s premier repositories of Lange's work. The donated photographs represent her entire career from the late 1920s to the early 1960s.
"With only two photographs by Lange previously in the gallery's collection, Dan and Susan's donation is a truly transformative gift," said National Gallery director Earl A. Powell III. "The exceptional depth and breadth of this group of photographs will allow the gallery to beautifully illustrate the full range of Lange’s art, from her early studio portraits and her profoundly moving documents of the impact of the Great Depression on the American people, to her later pictures featuring people and cultures she engaged with while traveling around the world."
The gifts are part of a broader initiative by Greenberg and Steinhauser that involved donations to thirteen leading art institutions. The couple has been collecting photographs, mostly by twentieth-century American photographers but also by artists from Latin American and Japan, for more than twenty years. Greenberg and Steinhauser are founding members of the Getty Museum Photographs Council, of which Greenberg is chair and Steinhauser is a past chair.