Photographer Berenice Abbott (1898-1991) proposed Changing New York, her grand project to document New York City, to the Federal Art Project (FAP) in 1935. The FAP was a Depression-era government program for unemployed artists and workers in related fields such as advertising, graphic design, illustration, photofinishing, and publishing.
Abbott devoted half of her photographs to lower Manhattan, particularly the financial district, the waterfront, the lower East Side, and Greenwich Village. Abbott also photographed areas of Brooklyn and Astoria, Queens. The collection provides insight into one artist’s vision to depict the changing nature of New York City during the 1930s.