In his ambitious photographic project ‘People of the 20th Century’, Sander aimed to chronicle rural and urban life in his native Germany. The project begins with a group entitled ‘The Farmers’ that is dedicated to people living from the land. The sixth group titled ‘The City’ illustrates elements of urban life, ranging from everyday occurrences to such particular social and cultural events as civic festivals. This photograph of a Corpus Christi procession was taken from the window of Sander’s studio in the Lindenthal district of Cologne, giving rise to its elevated perspective. In its subject and composition the picture relates closely to the theme of ‘Street and Street Life’, another portfolio in the same group. However, the mist enveloping many of the figures in the procession – perhaps emanating from censers traditionally swung during this procession – confers a ritualistic and mystical atmosphere that is not present in any other images in the portfolio.