Mädchen im Kirmeswagen [Girl in Fairground Caravan], 1926-32
© Die Photographische Sammlung/SK Stiftung Kultur - August Sander Archiv, Köln/VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn and DACS, London 2015

Reference URL

Mädchen im Kirmeswagen [Girl in Fairground Caravan], 1926-32 1926 - 1932
  • Artist Rooms
In photographing the subjects of his ambitious project ‘People of the 20th Century’, August Sander took a methodical approach consistent with his quasi-sociological analysis of Germany at this time. He divided his portraits into seven main groups. This photograph is from the portfolio entitled ‘Travelling People – Fair and Circus’ within the project’s sixth group, ‘The City’. It presents an example of Sander’s supreme skill in creating a striking composition. The strong horizontals and verticals of the slatted wooden caravan and its window are complimented by the girl’s arm bent at a right angle as she reaches out to open the door, which echoes the opening of the window above her head. Her arm also acts as a device in creating depth, extending from the space inside the caravan to its outer surface in the foreground, while darkness behind the girl’s head throws her features into striking relief.

Glossary Open


The arrangement of different elements in a work of art.


A group of art works, by one or more artists, issued or housed together in a portfolio case. This often applies to photographs or prints, and portfolios often include a title page or introductory text. The term is also used to describe a group of works which exemplify an artist's work overall.

Composition, Portfolio


  • Acc. No. AL00127
  • Medium Photograph on paper; modern print by Gerd Sander
  • Size 25.80 x 19.90 cm (paper 43.90 x 34.00 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