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Blind Children
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© J. Paul Getty Trust

August Sander
German, Düren, about 1930 - 1931
Gelatin silver print
9 1/4 x 6 5/8 in.
84.XM.126.107

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These two young girls linked arms for their portrait, expressing their close relationship quite literally. While the girl on the left is more fashionably dressed and neat in appearance, her downcast eyes convey a sense of reluctance and shyness. In contrast, the girl on the right, while unkempt, appears more bold and confident. August Sander created an evocative and poignant image that clearly illustrates the girls' personalities and closeness through their posture, despite the fact that their sightless eyes do not meet the camera.

Sander made this picture at a home for the blind. He intended the portrait to be part of his comprehensive survey, "People of the Twentieth Century," which illustrated German archetypes such as tradespeople, farmers, and politicians. He categorized disabled people along with the ill and the insane as "The Last People."