Lightnin Hopkins, Houston, Texas

Listing No: 7773

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Offered By

Photographic Archives Gallery

Wimberley, TX

Photographic Archives Gallery

P.O. Box 920

Wimberley, TX 78676


Please have the item listing number on hand when you call. This artwork's listing number is: 7773

Artwork Info

FAE Listing No:
Andy Hanson (1932-2008)
Lightnin Hopkins, Houston, Texas
Date of Work:
Where Produced:
Dallas, Texas, USA

Artwork Medium

Sub Type:
Gelatin Silver
on Photo Paper
Medium Notes:
This print was produced in the darkroom from the original negative on double weight fiber-base paper with archival processing techniques.


Edition Number:
Edition Size:
Number Available:

Artwork Size & Weight

8 x 8 in. (Sight Size)
Outer Dimensions:
Size Notes:
This is a loose, unmounted photograph. It is well suited for a 14x11 or 17x14 inch presentation mat/frame.

Artwork Surface

Surface Reflectivity:
Even - Matte

Artwork Condition

Excellent modern print.

Artwork Provenance

Andy and Beckie Reisberg
This modern print was produced for gallery inventory during Andy Hanson's lifetime, and with his approval of print quality. Upon his death, his estate allowed the remaining inventory of prints to be sold by Photographic Archives Gallery.

About this Piece

This portrait of Lightnin' Hopkins is one of Andy Hanson’s signature images and one of his favorite photographs from a 53-year career in photojournalism. Andy was 27 years old when he made this photograph, and this was his first introduction to the blues singer.

During Andy’s brief residence in Houston he often freelanced as photographer for Ed Badeaux, Associate Editor for Sing Out!, The Folk Song Magazine, New York, and for Mack McCormick, writer, collector and Texas cultural historian. Though Andy left little information surrounding the occasion for this Lightnin’ Hopkins portrait, it is understood that it was made on assignment with Ed Badeaux during the summer of 1959 for a future (undetermined) purpose. Badeaux and Hanson arranged the shot in Hopkins’ modest bedroom that he rented in a private shotgun home just off Dowling Street in Houston’s Third Ward. Hanson’s camera was a Rolleiflex, medium format, twin lens reflex with two flash guns. This image was ultimately used as the cover for Hopkins’ recording Autobiography in Blues on the Tradition label (TLP1040).

Andy photographed Lightnin’ Hopkins on at least four subsequent occasions, including two separate visits with Hopkins on his front porch in Houston, and he conducted a solo research trip to Centerville, Texas to interview and photograph Lightnin’s mother and sister in their home.

An Edition of 50 prints were made from the original negative in 2007 and offered as a fundraiser premium in 2010 for The Lightnin' Hopkins Marker Fund and the Harris County Historical Commission. Twenty-nine prints remain in the edition.

This image was included in the exhibition catalogue, “Andy Hanson: Another Side” (Photographic Archives Gallery, 2003).

About the Artist

Andy Hanson was best known as a noted and well-liked society photographer for the Dallas Times Herald from 1960-1991. He chronicled daily life in Dallas for over three decades. Ever-present at society functions and news worthy events, his trademark was his 35mm Leica range finder camera perched on a chest tripod that allowed him to juggle a hand-held flash with homemade bounce card and a notepad for taking names.

"I like to walk a lot. I like to ride with somebody else driving, it’s great. I like to be a passenger so I can see more. When I drive, I go the back ways. I don’t like to get on the freeways – I never know where to get off. The other day I was driving a guy to Mesquite. He said, “Turn right here.” I said, “Who’s driving? Whose car is this?” So we went the back way and saw some things he’d never seen before. When you get on the freeway you can’t see anything. There’s nothing to see anyway." (Andy Hanson)

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