Verso: Harry C. Ellis, American Flashlight Photographer, 13, Rue Brey, Store, Paris
Public urination is one of those unfortunate topics that every metropolitan city must deal with or ignore, much to the dismay of some. In Paris at the turn of the century, a male (unless controversy’s afoot) could relieve himself without a second thought using a fancifully designed pissoir (urinal). As this image clearly shows, some men have no reservations about staring back while they do their thing, even as they’re being photographed.
This was taken by photographer Harry C. Ellis. Among artists such as painter Auguste Rodin and dancer Loïe Fuller, Ellis documented life in Paris at the turn of the century.