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Article

Micheline Nilsen

Genre of Photography that encompasses both practical documentation of Architecture and aesthetic expression. The scope of the genre has been broad, including exterior and interior views of élite, industrial, or vernacular buildings, and groups of structures in urban or rural settings. Although the beginnings of architectural photography date back to the origins of photography, the study of its history and a critical discourse are more recent developments. Study and discourse accompanied the emergence of an art market for photographs in the 1970s, the collection of architectural photographs by museums, and the ensuing publication of scholarship that investigated the intellectual significance and cultural contingency of photographers’ points of view when their lenses have focused upon architectural subjects.

Article

American, 19th century, male.

Born in 1825, in Virginia; died in 1905, in Honolulu, Hawaii.

Photographer (daguerreotypes). Portraits, genre subjects, architectural subjects.

Born a free man in Virginia, James Presley Ball became one of the first African American photographers after learning the daguerreotype process from the Bostonian John B. Bailey, also an African American, in ...

Article

Stephanie Spencer

revised by Sophie Gordon

(b London, Aug 13, 1815; d London, May 15, 1894).

English printmaker and photographer. His first known works are architectural drawings exhibited at the Royal Academy in the 1840s, which documented buildings designed by his architect father Francis Octavius Bedford (1784–1858). He quickly turned to engraving, design, and lithography, working for Standidge & Co., and later Day & Son. He continued to produce lithographs until c. 1858, contributing to many significant publications on British design and manufacturing. He took up photography around 1853 initially to assist with the accuracy of his lithographic work, photographing works of art in the Marlborough House museum (later the South Kensington Museum) for Henry Cole. In 1854 he exhibited for the first time in the Photographic Society of London exhibition. Bedford continued to exhibit widely in British and international exhibitions throughout the 1850s and 1860s. He concentrated primarily on landscape and architectural scenes, often made during annual tours of southern England and Wales (...

Article

(b New Orleans, LA, March 15, 1873; d New Orleans, 1949).

American photographer. Bellocq is known to have worked as a commercial photographer in New Orleans from 1895 to 1940 and to have photographed for local shipbuilders and in the Chinese sector of New Orleans, although none of this work apparently survives. His photography is known only through prints made by Lee Friedlander from the 89 gelatin dry plate negatives found after Bellocq’s death. These negatives date from c. 1912 and are sympathetic portraits of prostitutes of New Orleans and interior views of their workplaces. Known as the Storyville Portraits, 34 were shown by MOMA, New York, in a travelling exhibition in 1970–71. Bellocq’s life was the subject of Pretty Baby (1978), a film by Louis Malle.

E. J. Bellocq: Storyville Portraits: Photographs from the New Orleans Red-light District, circa 1912 (exh. cat. by J. Szarkowski and L. Friedlander, New York, MOMA, 1970)G. Badger: ‘Viewed’, British Journal of Photography...

Article

Sanda Miller

(b Hobitza, Gorj, Feb 19, 1876; d Paris, March 16, 1957).

French sculptor, draughtsman, painter, and photographer of Romanian birth. He was one of the most influential 20th-century sculptors, but he left a relatively small body of work centred on 215 sculptures, of which about 50 are thought to have been lost or destroyed.

The fifth of seven children of a family of peasants, he left his tiny village c. 1887 for Slatina, after which he made his way to Craiova, the provincial capital of Oltenia. There he became a student at the School of Arts and Crafts in 1894. Mechanical technology, industrial design, mathematics, and physics figured prominently on his syllabus with some theoretical studies. He did not, therefore, receive a traditional academic training in sculpture; in fact he began studying at the newly founded Academy of Fine Arts in Bucharest, but even there instruction was still at an experimental stage, particularly in sculpture.

Brancusi is thought to have been prolific in his student years in Craiova. Various objects subsequently discovered on the premises of his old school have been attributed to him, some of them perhaps as collaborations with other fellow students, including a walnut casket (Craiova, Maria C. S. Nicolǎescu-Plopşor priv. col., see Brezianu, ...

Article

French, 19th century, male.

Born, 13 June 1812, near Besançon, France; died 31 December 1877, in Dornach, France.

Photographer, textile designer, entrepreneur.

Botanicals, landscapes, nature, architecture, figures, animals.

Adolphe Braun had a successful career creating designs for printed fabrics and wallpapers. In the early 1840s, he was admitted to the Société Industrielle de Mulhouse, and designs by his firm were gaining international recognition. To provide his designers with models for study, Braun photographed botanical arrangements using the wet collodion process, which was perfected in the early 1850s. His albumen silver prints of flowers, grasses and botanical materials are richly toned and expressive, in contrast to standard scientific botanical studies. Although Braun initially approached photography as a technical means to further the art of textile design, he quickly realized the artistic merit of his photographs and distributed them to a wider public in catalogues....

Article

Mattie Boom

(b Rotterdam, Sept 12, 1857; d Amsterdam, June 5, 1923).

Dutch painter and photographer. He trained as a painter and draughtsman at the academy in The Hague. Although the Dutch painter Charles Rochussen taught the students history and landscape painting, Breitner’s interests did not lie in this area. In 1880 he worked for a year in the studio of Willem Maris after his academy training. Maris belonged to the Hague school of painters, who worked in the plein-air tradition of the French Barbizon school. Breitner painted outdoor life with them, although it was not the picturesqueness of the landscape or the Dutch skies that appealed to him. With Van Gogh he roamed the working-class districts of The Hague and through the dockyards of Rotterdam. Both artists recorded the vitality of city life in their sketchbooks. Breitner consciously chose these themes and motifs: he wanted to paint people going about their daily lives, and on his trips through the towns and docks he was constantly in search of motifs and impressions that he could use in his paintings....

Article

Kevin Halliwell

[Karrik, Vil’yam; Karrik, Vasily (Andreyevich)]

(b Edinburgh, Dec 31, 1827; d St Petersburg, Nov 1878).

Scottish photographer, active in Russia. He was the son of a Scottish timber merchant living in St Petersburg. He studied architecture and painting at the Academy of Arts in St Petersburg from 1844 to 1853, when he went to Rome to further his studies in painting. On his return to St Petersburg in spring 1856 he had already decided to take up photography for financial reasons, and he became the assistant to a portrait photographer named Hoch. In 1857 he travelled to Edinburgh, where he studied photography briefly with James Good Tunny and met the photographer John McGregor (d 1872). McGregor agreed to travel to St Petersburg, and the two opened a portrait studio there in September 1859, making albumen prints using wet collodion plates. Their photographs received approval from the imperial household, and Carrick developed a relationship with the court painter Mihály Zichy, with whom he embarked on a project of photographing the works of artists (e.g. Zichy’s watercolour of the ...

Article

Silvia Lucchesi

[Marius Pictor]

(b Bologna, Sept 8, 1852; d Venice, March 18, 1924).

Italian painter, photographer, architect and illustrator. He trained initially as a musician and only later became a painter, studying (1872–8) at the Accademia di Belle Arti in Bologna under the history and portrait painter Antonio Puccinelli (1822–97). He made several short trips to Paris and London before moving to Rome where he became friends with Vincenzo Cabianca (1827–1902), a plein-air painter, and joined the group founded by Nino Costa, In Arte Libertas (see Rome, §III, 7). He made his name in 1885 when he exhibited 18 paintings at the group’s first exhibition. In the 1880s he experimented with photography, and in certain cases photographs acted as preliminary stages for his paintings. In 1892 he settled definitively in Venice and two years later adopted the pseudonym ‘Marius Pictor’. His work expressed the romantic and literary climate of the fin-de-siècle, and his painting is linked with the work of such writers as Charles Baudelaire and Edgar Allan Poe. De Maria’s work derives from flower painting and from the painting of Alexandre-Gabriel Decamps; brushstrokes are carefully built up, and rough, chalky colour is thickly applied. He was extremely skilful in his manipulation of colour and light to express the richness of his imagination. He liked to create evocative images and to represent the most fantastic and unusual aspects of nature, as in the famous painting the ...

Article

Patricia Strathern

(b Verdun, Feb 14, 1838; d Bois-Colombes, nr Paris, March 12, 1917).

French photographer. He was one of the most accomplished architectural photographers of his time, and much of his work was devoted to constructions and monuments in France. He shared a studio in Paris until 1862 with Hyacinthe-César Delmaet (1828–62), and on the death of Delmaet that same year Durandelle married his widow, Clémence, who kept the surname Delmaet and became his partner. Their prints continued to be signed d & d after the two original partners. He photographed building work and sites in Paris (e.g. Le Pont d’Arcole, 1868; see Berger and Levrault, pl. 50), including a series of the Opéra (1865), which was published as two albums of 97 photographs. From 1870 to 1871 he photographed the events of the Paris Commune, and from 1874 to 1876 he worked on a series of Mont-Saint-Michel. From 1877 to 1890 he covered the various stages in the construction of the church of ...

Article

French, 19th century, male.

Born 1809, in Paris; died 1909, in Chartres.

Painter, architect, photographer (?).

Charles Victor Famin won the Grand Prix de Rome in 1835. He died at the age of 100. Many questions concerning Famin's identity have yet to be answered. He may have been the landscape and architectural photographer of the same name whose first attempts appeared in ...

Article

British, 19th century, male.

Born 1819, in Lancashire, England; died 1869, in Potter’s Bar, Hertfordshire, England.

Photographer, painter. Landscapes, war scenes, architectural subjects, portraits.

Born to a wealthy family, Roger Fenton studied mathematics, Greek, and Latin at University College London. After graduating with a bachelor of arts in ...

Article

British, 19th century, male.

Born 7 October 1822, in Chesterfield, Derbyshire, England; died 1898, in Cannes, France.

Photographer. Architectural subjects, landscapes.

The only son of a prosperous wine merchant, Francis Frith Jr. was raised in a devout Quaker household. He found success in the grocery business at a relatively young age. In ...

Article

Patricia Strathern

(b Langres, Haute-Marne, 1804; d Courcelles, nr Paris, 1892).

French photographer and draughtsman. A wealthy landowner and scholar who travelled widely, he made numerous sketches of Islamic architecture (untraced; engravings, Granada, Casa Tiros) and he took many very fine landscape photographs. During his travels in Italy, Asia Minor, Greece, Lebanon and Egypt (1841–5) he produced more than 900 daguerreotypes, which were used to illustrate his book on the Arabic monuments of the Middle East; he also photographed French monuments (e.g. La Tour St-Jacques, Paris, 1841; see Berger-Levrault, pl. 72). His work remained completely unknown until the plates (London, H. and A. Gernsheim priv. col.) were rediscovered in 1952. One of the earliest French landscape photographers, he devoted much of his time to his home at Courcelles, where he became a recluse after 1846. His only known contemporary exhibition was in Granada in 1833.

Monuments arabes et mauresques de Cordoue, Séville et Grenade (Paris, 1836)Monuments arabes d’Egypte, de Syrie et d’Asie Mineure...

Article

Dennis Radford

(b Dresden, Oct 16, 1813; d Stellenbosch, Oct 8, 1898).

German architect, builder, painter and photographer, active in South Africa. He showed a talent for drawing at an early age. In 1825 he entered the Akademie der Künste, Dresden, to study architecture, qualifying in 1829. He emigrated to Cape Town in 1838. His first commission in 1840 was the new Roman Catholic Cathedral of St Mary, Cape Town, undertaken with his partner Carel Sparmann, which was an unsuccessful venture. Hager then moved to Stellenbosch living principally by portrait painting (examples in Stellenbosch Mus.). It was not until 1854 that his next building, the Lutheran Church, Dorp Street, Stellenbosch, was built. Only in 1863, however, did he receive his first major commission, the remodelling of the Dutch Reformed Church, Stellenbosch. This involved the addition of a large nave, aisles and tower to the existing cruciform church. All the additions were strongly Gothic Revival in character, and the rest of the church was given a Gothic appearance. It would be an exaggeration to claim that it was Hager who introduced the Gothic style into Dutch Reformed churches, but it can be said that he introduced a purer strain of the Revival, although this was still far from ‘correct’. The church at Stellenbosch differs most from previous attempts to Gothicize Dutch Reformed churches in the tower, which has triple-stage base tracery windows surmounted by a broach spire. The open Gothic trussed roof marks its first appearance in Dutch Reformed churches. In ...

Article

Gjergj Frashëri

[Nikollë]

(b Shkodër, Aug 15, 1860; d Shkodër, Dec 12, 1939).

Albanian painter, architect, sculptor and photographer. His grandfather Andrea Idromeno was a painter and a doctor of theology; his father, Arsen Idromeno, was a furniture designer and painter. Kol Idromeno took private lessons in painting (1871–5) at the studio of the photographer and painter Pietro Marubi (1834–1903). In 1875 he won a competition and began studies at the Accademia di Belle Arti, Venice. However, due to arguments with his teacher, he abandoned the school and continued his studies in one of the large studios in Venice (1876–8).

At first Idromeno produced works with both religious and secular themes that were noted for their highly realistic rendering of the human form (e.g. St Mary Magdalene, oil on canvas, 1877; Shkodër Mus.). Many of his biblical works were executed in churches within the Shkodër district, with perhaps his best work being the frescoes of the Orthodox Church in Shkodër, especially the fragment depicting ...

Article

French, 19th century, male.

Born 30 August 1820, in Villiers-le-Bel, France; died 1884, in Cairo, Egypt.

Photographer, painter, inventor. Architectural subjects, landscapes.

Gustave Le Gray was born to an affluent merchant family in Villiers-le-Bel, near Paris. In 1839 he earned a bachelor of letters and worked as a law clerk until ...

Article

French, 19th century, male.

Active in the USA.

Born 1823; died 1873.

Painter, draughtsman, cartographer, architect, photographer. Landscapes with figures, urban landscapes, architectural views. Cards.

Persac emigrated to the USA in the 1840s and settled in New Orleans. His life appears to have been little documented and recent research has failed to throw any new light on this artist. An individual exhibition was dedicated to his work in Louisiana State University Museum of Art in Baton Rouge in ...

Article

American, 19th century, male.

Born 13 July 1809, in Castle Caereinion, North Wales; died 28 May 1857, in Dubuque, Iowa.

Entrepreneur, photographer. Portraits, architectural subjects.

An early practitioner of daguerreotype, John Plumbe won national competitions for his portraits and views of important buildings. Recognizing the commercial potential of the photographic process, ...

Article

Virginia Dodier

(b Conflans-sur-Anille, Sarthe, ?1819; d Conflans-sur-Anille, March 4, 1882).

French photographer, engineer and chemist. He began photographic research in 1842 while studying civil engineering at the Ecole Centrale, Paris, and continued during his career as a chemical engineer in government service. He is regarded as the practical founder of the carbon print process, photolithography and the collotype process. His inventions included methods for photochemical engraving and daguerreotype plates (c. 1842–8), gelatin negatives on glass (c. 1850–51), photolithography (1855), photoelectrotyping (‘hélio-plastie’, patented 1855) and direct paper positives and negatives in colour (results published 1859). From c. 1849 and during the 1850s he photographed his fellow workers at saltworks in the French Jura and landscapes near his family home, using a paper negative process (see Jammes and Parry Janis, pl. xiii).

See also Lithography §I and Photography §I.

Traité des impressions photographiques (Paris, 1883)R. Colson: Mémoires originaux des créateurs de la photographie...