Men of the Docks Poster

Men of the Docks Poster


This poster features George Bellows' Men of the Docks.

Bellows arrived in New York in 1904 where he found rich subject matter in the lives of poor workers in the booming metropolis. Here, day labourers await jobs on the docks of Brooklyn on a grey winter morning. The towers of Lower Manhattan rise in the distance.

Positioned on the waterfront of the East River, we are looking across the partly frozen river towards the tall buildings of Lower Manhattan. The warehouse in shadow on the left and the massive hull of an ocean liner on the right form two powerful diagonals that meet at the sunlit Manhattan skyline, which rises from the water like a cliff face.

Seen from a relatively low vantage point, the warehouse, liner and skyline form three sides of a box, the fourth wall of which is formed in part by the group of longshoremen, who are most likely waiting to unload the liner. By placing the men against the Manhattan skyline, Bellows ironically contrasts the dynamic centre of modern capitalism with the harsh reality of the people whose labour kept it functioning.

Product Code 1047645
Artist George Bellows
Material FSC Paper
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