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Article

Sarah Urist Green

(b Kabul, June 5, 1973).

Afghan video and performance artist and photographer, active also in the USA. After fleeing Soviet-occupied Kabul with her family in the late 1980s, Abdul lived as a refugee in Germany and India before moving to Southern California. She received a BA in Political Science and Philosophy at California State University, Fullerton, and an MFA at the University of California, Irvine, in 2000. Abdul first returned to a post-Taliban Afghanistan in 2001, where she encountered a place and people transformed by decades of violence and unrest. Since that time, Abdul has made work in Kabul and Los Angeles, staging herself in performances and creating performance-based video works and photography that explore ideas of home and the interconnection between architecture and identity.

Beginning in the late 1990s, Abdul made emotionally intense performance art informed by that of Yugoslavian artist Marina Abramović and Cuban-born American artist Ana Mendieta. At the time unable to travel to Afghanistan, Abdul created and documented performances in Los Angeles that probed her position as Afghan, female, Muslim, a refugee and a transnational artist. In ...

Article

Mary Christian

(b Orange, NJ, May 8, 1937).

American photographer. After teaching English literature for several years, Adams turned to photography in the late 1960s, studying with Minor White. In his black-and-white photographs of the American West, such as his series From the Missouri West (1980), he emphasized man’s presence in nature and the tension between the beauty of the landscape and man’s effect upon it. His landscapes include such features as telephone poles and wires, mountains edged by highway guard-rails, parking lots and housing complexes. In 1975 Adams took part in the group exhibition New Topographics: Photographs of a Man-altered Landscape (see New Topographics). As a photographer and an articulate writer on photography, he has published Summer Nights (1985) and important essays on 19th- and 20th-century photography.

Adams, Robert (ii) Cottonwoods; Photographs (Washington, DC, 1994) Notes for Friends: Along Colorado Roads (Boulder, CO, 1999) Along Some Rivers: Photographs and Conversations, with foreward by ...

Article

Rebecca Swift

Advertising uses visuals (predominantly photographic) and copy (text) to convey an idea or make an affective appeal. Typically, specialists in commercial images are commissioned by companies to produce imagery to a specific brief, including such considerations as image size, media placement, and length of campaign. Until the growth in the 1980s of stock libraries, which offer a wide range of images that are licensed for use, commissioning photography was standard in the advertising industry. The proliferation of digital photography in the early 21st century has also prompted the use of consumer-generated or amateur photography in advertising. Finally, whereas most of the history of advertising has been print-based, digital advertising now appears across an array of platforms.

As a commercial practice, advertising photography is client-driven; awards for creativity inevitably go to the whole creative team of an advertising agency and not just to the photographer. Nevertheless, influential photographers have emerged from this commercial realm. Advertising is practised around the globe, but its photographic history centres on London, New York, and Paris where agencies such as J. Walter Thompson, Reynell & Son (now part of TMP Worldwide), and Publicis were established early in the 20th century....

Article

A. N. Lavrentiev

(Vladimirovich) [Alpert, Max]

(b Simferopol’ [now in Ukraine], March 18, 1899; d Moscow, Nov 30, 1980).

Russian photographer. He was the son of an artisan. In 1914 Al’pert moved to Odessa and entered a photographic studio as an apprentice. After serving in the Red Army, he worked from 1924 as a photojournalist, taking news photographs for Rabochaya gazeta. He was already distinguished by his energy and his ability to capture events in a highly professional manner. Many of his photographs (e.g. Maxim Gorky’s Return from Italy, 1928; see Shudakov, p. 21) were widely published. In 1928 he moved to the newspaper Pravda, where he began to work systematically on serial photography (e.g. The Construction of the Magnitogorsk Metallurgical Factory, 1929; see Morozov and Lloyd, pp. 130–31). The photoseries 24 Hours in the Life of the Filippov Family (1931; see Shudakov, pp. 22–3) became widely known; it was executed by a collective of photographers in which Al’pert and Arkady Shaykhet played an active role. A consummate example of photonarrative, it reveals in detail the life of a simple Moscow worker’s family....

Article

Aurélie Verdier

(b Saïda, Algeria, 1953).

French painter, sculptor, photographer, film maker, writer and installation artist of Algerian birth. Born to Spanish parents, he was much affected by North African as well as Southern European culture. He trained at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Le Havre. Despite a pervasive and diverse use of media, Alberola often stressed the coexistence of his different artistic practices as leading to painting alone. His paintings relied heavily on evocative narratives, at once personal and ‘historical’. Alberola conceived of his role as a storyteller, on the model of African oral cultures. Convinced that narratives could not be renewed, he argued that a painter’s main task was to reactivate his work through contact with his pictorial heritage. The main points of reference for his paintings of the early 1980s were Velázquez, Manet or Matisse, whose works he quoted in a personal way. In the early 1980s he undertook a series of paintings inspired by mythological subjects, which he combined with his own history as the principal subject-matter of his work. The biblical story of Susannah and the Elders as well as the Greek myth of Actaeon provided his most enduring subjects, both referring to the act of looking as taboo, as in ...

Article

Alfonso  

Jerald R. Green

Spanish photographic firm. It was founded by Alfonso Sánchez García (b Ciudad Real, 21 Feb 1880; d Madrid, 13 Feb 1953) and later run with his son Alfonso [Alfonsito] Sánchez Portela (b Madrid, 16 Nov 1902). After apprenticeship to a number of important Madrid-based studio photographers, Alfonso Sánchez García alternated studio photography and photojournalism. In 1909 he covered the calamitous campaign in Spanish Morocco. A year later he opened the successful Madrid Alfonso studio and photographic agency, where his son Alfonsito was apprenticed. Alfonsito, known as Alfonso after 1930, published press photographs while still in his mid-teens, and in 1921 he accompanied his father on a trip to document the continuing hostilities in North Africa. A year later Alfonsito photographed the Moroccan chieftain Abd al-Karim, but it was during the dictatorship of Primo de Rivera (1923–30), the Spanish Republic (1931–6) and the Spanish Civil War (...

Article

Lee Fontanella

(b Mazarambroz, Toledo, Aug 14, 1832; d Toledo, Dec 3, 1914).

Spanish photographer. He moved to Toledo c. 1862, and he and Fernando González Pedroso were the first two professional photographers to set up a permanent establishment there. His suite of 12 vistas de Toledo (Toledo, 1871) consisted of 14 photographs mounted on decorated passe-partouts. Alguacil is known for this format, which he enlarged for certain views contained in the 1870s series of publications of Monumentos artísticos do España (Toledo; R. Amador de los Ríos, ed.). Alguacil is usually identified with this series, in which the views were not limited to Toledo. He also maintained a ‘Museo fotográfico’, produced a series of photographs on San Juan de los Reyes (1895) and in 1906 won the photographic competition in La Mancha for photographing monuments and art objects. The Alguacil archives are located in the town hall in Toledo.

M. Carrero de Dios and others: Toledo en la fotografía de Alguacil, 1832–1914...

Article

A. N. Lavrentiev

(Platonovich)

(b Serpukhov, Moscow district, Oct 1, 1882; d Serpukhov, April 29, 1947).

Russian photographer. He was the son of a hairdresser. In 1901 Andreyev studied painting and, at the same time, ‘art’ photography. In his later works he successfully combined the qualities of easel painting and photography, and he experimented widely with printing techniques involving oil pigment, bromoil and gum arabic. He was a master of delicate, lyrical landscapes, striving for the broadest tonal generalization of forms in his depictions of the countryside of middle Russia. Among his most famous landscape photographs are the coarse-grained Crimean Landscape (1929; see Morozov, no. 140) and Into the Blizzard (1930; see Morozov, no. 141). The same rich tonality and picturesque quality are also present in his genre photographs. From 1906 he successfully exhibited at national and international photographic exhibitions, where he was awarded many diplomas and gold medals.

S. Morozov: Tvorcheskaya fotografiya [Creative photography] (Moscow, 1986) L. Ukhtomskaya and A. Fomin: Antologia soveskoy fotografii, 1917–70...

Article

Jason E. Hill

(b Philadelphia, PA, April 21, 1912; d London, Jan 4, 2012).

British photojournalist of American birth. A full member of Magnum from 1957 until her death in 2012, she was, with Inge Morath (1923–2002), one of the first two women to join the agency. Best known for her unique, decade-long photographic relationship with the actress Marilyn Monroe, Arnold produced a major body of photojournalism for such magazines as Life, Picture Post, and Sunday Times Magazine of London on subjects ranging from African American culture and politics in the 1950s and 1960s to rural conditions in China in 1979.

While Arnold was studying photography under Harper’s Bazaar art director Alexey Brodovitch at New York’s New School for Social Research (beginning in 1948), she produced a portfolio on Harlem’s vibrant culture of fashion shows. Brodovitch was so impressed with the Harlem portfolio that he recommended Arnold to the London illustrated Picture Post, which syndicated the series in 1950, launching her career. Arnold soon after turned her photographic attention to African American migrant workers operating amidst pervasive housing discrimination in Long Island, New York. Throughout her career she was acutely attuned to her subjects’ calculated self-presentation before the camera and marshalled this sensitivity to foster cooperative relations with potentially recalcitrant subjects. One such subject was Marilyn Monroe; the ‘candid’ portraits Arnold made on the set of John Huston’s ...

Article

Maria Morris Hambourg

(b Libourne, nr Bordeaux, Feb 12, 1857; d Paris, Aug 4, 1927).

French photographer. An only child of working-class parents, he was orphaned at an early age and went to sea. Determined to be an actor, he managed to study at the Conservatoire d’Art Dramatique in Paris for a year but was dismissed to finish his military service. Thereafter he acted for several seasons in the provinces but failed to distinguish himself and left the stage. An interest in painting but lack of facility led him to take up photography in the late 1880s. At this time photography was experiencing unprecedented expansion in both commercial and amateur fields. Atget entered the commercial arena. Equipped with a standard box camera on a tripod and 180×240 mm glass negatives, he gradually made some 10,000 photographs of France that describe its cultural legacy and its popular culture. He printed his negatives on ordinary albumen-silver paper and sold his prints to make a living. Despite the prevailing taste for soft-focus, painterly photography from ...

Article

Vanessa Rocco

(b Karlsruhe, May 20, 1906; d New York, July 30, 2004).

American photographer of German birth. She is best known for cutting-edge advertising images made in 1930s Germany as part of the studio pair of Ringl + Pit. She studied sculpture for three years in her hometown of Karlsruhe before moving onto the Akademie der Bildenden Künste in Stuttgart in 1928. While there she abandoned sculpture for photography, and became a student of the successful commercial photographer Walter Peterhans (1897–1960) in 1929, along with another young woman, Grete Stern. After Peterhans was recruited to found the first department of photography at the Bauhaus in Dessau, Rosenberg and Stern took over his studio as Ringl + Pit, a combination of their two childhood nicknames.

Studio Ringl + Pit were at the forefront of an active fusion of Surrealism and Bauhaus-inspired New Vision in the photography worlds in Germany, France, and elsewhere in the late 1920s and early 1930s. From Surrealism they often solicited references to uncanny human stand-ins such as mannequins and dolls; from the New Vision they were inspired by unusual angles, close-ups, and abstractions (see, for example, ...

Article

Reinhold Misselbeck

(Royston)

(b London, Jan 2, 1938).

English photographer . Self-taught, he began in 1959 as an assistant to the fashion photographer John French (1907–66) in London. From 1960 he worked for the English version of Vogue and as a freelance photographer for the Sunday Times, the Daily Express, Elle, Glamour and other publications; he also directed television commercials and, from 1968 to 1972, television documentary films. His main photographic subjects were portraits, fashion and nudes. His reputation was at its peak in the 1960s, when he and the model Veruschka (Vera Lehndorff) provided the basis for the fictional characters in Michelangelo Antonioni’s film Blow Up (1966). Bailey’s photographs of this period were published in books such as The Truth about Modelling, Box of Pin-ups and Goodbye Baby and Amen, which also enhanced the myth of swinging London. In 1972 Bailey began publishing the magazine Ritz, in partnership with the photographer Patrick Lichfield (...

Article

Daniela Mrázková

(b Warsaw, July 13, 1912; d Moscow, June 11, 1990).

Russian photographer of Polish birth. He studied mathematics at Moscow State University and worked as a mathematician from 1934 to 1938. A self-taught photographer, he worked for newspapers from 1936 and became a professional photojournalist in 1940. Throughout the Russian involvement in World War II, from 1941 to 1945, he worked as a war correspondent for the daily paper Izvestiya and the Army newspaper Na razgrom vraga, producing emotionally powerful photographs showing the hardships that war brings to ordinary people. The series of photographs Grief and Searching for the Dead (both 1942; see Mrázková and Remeš, pp. 61–5) placed him among the best known of war photographers. Taken in Kerch in the Crimea just after the German army had passed through, they portray relatives searching for their dead and crowded around an open mass grave.

The best of Bal’termants’s work remained unpublished for a long time after the war because it shattered the myth of the ‘Great Patriotic War’ as the triumph of superhuman Russian heroism. From ...

Article

(b Hameln, April 3, 1911; d Plauen, March 4, 2001).

German photographer . Self-taught as a photographer, he worked as a casual labourer for Hanomag in Hannover from 1929 to 1930 and again from 1933 to 1941, occupying himself as an independent photographer from 1930 to 1933. He was one of the younger members of the Arbeiter-Fotograf movement, and his photographs provide a social documentary of Germany under the Weimar Republic. His earlier experiences as a labourer gave him a sympathetic eye for the widespread poverty of the period. Ballhause was opposed to the Nazis and was consequently hounded by the Gestapo. He was imprisoned in 1933 in Hannover, after which he gave up photography, and was again imprisoned from 1944 to 1945 in Zwickau and Plauen. From 1939 to 1941 he trained as a chemical technician in Hannover, and he worked in that capacity at the Vomag works in Plauen from 1941 to 1944. After being Mayor of Strassburg bei Plauen from ...

Article

Morgan Falconer

(b Nigeria, 1963).

Nigerian photographer, film maker, installation artist and writer active in Scotland. He studied Chemical Engineering at Strathclyde University, Glasgow (1981–85), before completing an MA in Media, Fine Art, Theory and Practice at the Slade School of Fine Art, London (1996–8). Bamgboyé’s earliest work was photographic: The Lighthouse series (1989; see 1998 book, p. 65) initiated his interest in the representation of black masculinity by depicting his own naked body in often theatrical contortions, amid mundane domestic rooms; the frames of the photographs are attached to coat hangers, underlining the theme of domesticity and pointing to his interest in the changeable character of subjectivity. These themes were further explored in films, which he began to make in 1993: Spells for Beginners (1994; see 2000 exh. cat., p. 74) explores the breakdown of his long-term relationship with a woman through a broken mix of confessional dialogue and fleeting images of their home. The installation of which this film is a part takes the form of an ordinary living room and is typical of Bamgboyé’s technique of adumbrating his imagery with sculptural motifs that emphasize his themes. In other films he explored the issue of migration: ...

Article

Monica Bohm-Duchen

(b Haag, Austria, April 5, 1900; d Santa Barbara, CA, Sept 30, 1985).

American painter, designer, photographer and typographer, of Austrian birth. After serving in the Austrian army (1917–18), Bayer studied architecture under Professor Schmidthammer in Linz in 1919 and in 1920 worked with the architect Emanuel Margold in Darmstadt. From 1921 to 1923 he attended the Bauhaus in Weimar, studying mural painting (with Vasily Kandinsky) and typography; it was at this time that he created the Universal alphabet, consisting only of lowercase letters. In 1925 he returned to the Bauhaus, then in Dessau, as a teacher of advertising, layout and typography, remaining there until 1928. For the next ten years he was based in Berlin as a commercial artist: he worked as art manager of Vogue (1929–30) and as director of the Dorland advertising agency. Shortly after his first one-man exhibitions at the Galerie Povolotski, Paris, and at the Kunstlerbund März, Linz (both 1929), he created photomontages of a Surrealist nature, such as ...

Article

Reinhold Misselbeck

(Walter Hardy)

(b London, Jan 14, 1904; d Broad Chalke, nr Salisbury, Jan 18, 1980).

English photographer and stage designer. He began taking photographs at an early age, mainly of his sisters Nancy and Baba. Beaton emulated pictures he saw in fashion magazines, especially those by Baron Adolphe de Meyer and the soft-focus technique used in them. In 1922 he went to Cambridge University to study history and architecture, but he left after three years without graduating. He took an office job, but he continued to photograph, receiving portrait commissions. Diaghilev’s praise of his photographs, particularly the double portrait of Nancy and Baba with Reflection (1924), encouraged him to set up a studio in his home in Sussex Gardens, London. Beaton created lavish decorations and painted his backgrounds himself. He encouraged his subjects to sit in striking poses. In his diary he noted: ‘Till now my pictures have been ordinary attempts to make people look as beautiful as possible, but these are fantastic and amusing’. The friendship and patronage of the ...

Article

Reinhold Misselbeck

German photographers. Bern(har)d Becher (b Siegen, 20 Aug 1931; d Rostock, 22 June 2007) served an apprenticeship as a decorative painter in Siegen, then studied painting and lithography at the Staatliche Kunstakademie in Stuttgart (1953–6) and typography at the Staatliche Kunstakademie in Düsseldorf (1957–61). There in 1959 he met Hilla Wobeser (b Potsdam, 2 Sept 1934), who had trained as a photographer in Potsdam and, after a period as an aerial photographer in Hamburg, had moved to Düsseldorf in 1957. They married in 1961. Together they developed a documentary approach to photographing their industrial surroundings that introduced new kinds of social, cultural and aesthetic questions about the increasing destruction of many late 19th-century buildings. They systematically photographed half-timbered houses, cooling towers, water towers, blast furnaces and derricks of the same or similar design, forcing the viewer to compare and judge the buildings from unfamiliar aesthetic standpoints. This photographic documentation was not based, however, on a system of encyclopedic thoroughness, nor on a theory of objectivity, but primarily on the desire to express their own social and political views. For this reason, they excluded any details that would detract from the central theme and instead set up comparisons of viewpoint and lighting through which the eye is led to the basic structural pattern of the images being compared. This principle, which is allied to the philosophy underlying the ...

Article

Peter Webb

(b Kattowitz, Germany [now Katowice, Poland], March 13, 1902; d Paris, Feb 24, 1975).

German photographer, sculptor, printmaker, painter, and writer. As a child he developed fear and hatred for his tyrannical father, who totally dominated his gentle and affectionate mother. He and his younger brother Fritz found refuge from this oppressive family atmosphere in a secret garden decorated with toys and souvenirs and visited by young girls who joined in sexual games. In 1923 Bellmer was sent by his father to study engineering at the Technische Hochschule in Berlin, but he became interested in politics, reading the works of Marx and Lenin and joining in discussions with artists of the Dada. He was especially close to George Grosz, who taught him drawing and perspective in 1924 and whose advice to be a savage critic of society led him to abandon his engineering studies in that year. Having shown artistic talent at an early age, he began designing advertisements as a commercial artist and illustrated various Dada novels, such as ...

Article

Martha Schwendener

[Ben Youseph Nathan, Esther Zeghdda]

(b London, Nov 21, 1869; d Brooklyn, NY, Nov 27, 1933).

American photographer. Born Esther Zeghdda Ben Youseph Nathan to a German mother and an Algerian father, she immigrated to the United States in 1895. She worked as a milliner in New York before opening a photographic portrait studio in 1897. Her ‘gallery of illustrious Americans’ featured actresses, politicians, and fashionable socialites, including President Theodore Roosevelt, author Edith Wharton, artist William Merritt Chase, and actress Julia Marlowe. Ben-Yusuf also created Pictorialist-inspired artwork like The Odor of Pomegranates (1899; see fig.), an allegory informed by the myth of Persephone and the idea of the pomegranate as a tantalizing but odourless fruit. Ben-Yusuf was included in an exhibition organized by the Linked Ring, Brotherhood of the in London in 1896 and continued to exhibit in the group’s annual exhibitions until 1902. Her photographs were exhibited at the National Academy of Design in 1898 and at the Camera Club of New York in ...