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Brothers, about 1920
© Die Photographische Sammlung/SK Stiftung Kultur - August Sander Archiv, Köln/VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn and DACS, London 2015

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Brothers, about 1920 about 1920

Not on display

  • Artist Rooms
August Sander conceived his monumental documentary project ‘People of the 20th Century’ in the mid-1920s, after developing a career as a portrait photographer based in studios in Linz and Cologne, and subsequently travelling through south-western Germany for commissions. Aiming to create a typology of the German people categorized by their estates, professions and living environments, he compiled over five hundred photographs, divided into seven groups and over forty-five portfolios. Although Sander continued working on the project until his death in 1964, the collection was never finalized. Brothers almost certainly originated in the Westerwald region that is represented in the project’s first group ‘The Farmer’, and resonates with such images as ‘Farm Children’ (about 1913), ‘Widow with her Sons’ (about 1921) and ‘Widower’ (1914). Wearing matching suits, and with their hair closely cropped, the two boys share a striking family resemblance that extends from their features to their poses and expressions.


  • Acc. No. AL00167
  • Medium Black and white photograph on paper
  • Size 25.70 x 18.90 cm (paper 43.90 x 33.90 cm; mount: 46.00 x 36.00 cm) (framed: 48.20 x 38.20 x 3.20 cm)
  • Credit ARTIST ROOMS National Galleries of Scotland and Tate. Lent by Anthony d'Offay 2010