My favorite part of George Luks’ richly detailed “Street Scene (Hester Street)” are the plucked chickens hanging upside on on the right side of the canvas.
“One of the dynamic, young group of American Realists known as the Ashcan School, George Luks was a tough character who in art and life embraced the gritty side of turn-of-the-century New York,” states the caption to this painting on the website of the Brooklyn Museum.
“In this important early work, Luks pictured the street life of one of the Lower East Side’s teeming immigrant neighborhoods. By 1905, Hester Street had become home to a recently arrived population of Eastern European Jews and the site of a daily open-air market where thousands shopped for their necessities.
“Hester Street thus provided the type of unvarnished urban subject to which Luks was particularly drawn, and one from which New Yorkers accustomed to genteel shops and formal public etiquette would have recoiled.”
Tags: Ashcan school painters New York, George Luks, Hester Street 1900, Hester Street Lower East Side, immigrants on Hester Street, Jewish Immigrants Hester Street, Lower East Side crowded street, social realism painters New York City