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Italo Zannier

British photographers of Italian origin. Antonio Beato (b ?the Veneto, c. 1830; d Luxor, 1903) and his brother Felice [Felix] Beato (b ?the Veneto, c. 1830; d Mandalay, after 1904) were for many years thought to be one person with two names, Antonio and Felice, and only recently has the mystery been solved of the almost contemporaneous presence of a Beato in two different (and often very distant) places. The misunderstanding arose from the fact that both their names (Antonio Felice Beato) appear on several photographs. A closer inquiry brought to light a letter written by Antonio and published in the French paper, Moniteur de la photographie (1 June 1886), in which he explains that he is not the producer of the exotic photographs recently exhibited in London, mention of which had been made in the Moniteur of 10 March; the photographer was instead ‘[his] brother Monsieur Felice Beato of Japan’....

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

Luke Gartlan

[Kyūichi]

(b Nagasaki, 1843/4; d Tokyo, Feb 17, 1875).

Japanese photographer. He first encountered photography through the circle of students associated with the Dutch physicians Jan Karel van den Broek and Julius L. C. Pompe van Meerdervoort, which included the Fukuoka-born Maeda Genzō (1831–1906) and the pioneer photographer Ueno Hikoma (1838–1904). By 1863 Uchida had established an import business for photographic supplies in Nagasaki. In search of new opportunities, Uchida and Morita Raizō, a nephew of Ueno, opened one of the first photographic studios in Osaka in 1865. The following year, Uchida moved to Yokohama where he established a photographic studio in the Bashamichi district of the port. After the Meiji Restoration of 1868, Uchida expanded his business into Tokyo, opening two further branches in the districts of Nihonbashi and Asakusa. He maintained a successful portraiture business in these various studios and his carte-de-visite portraits of Japanese politicians, diplomats, scholars, and entertainers testify to his popularity. Uchida also received considerable praise for his Japanese ‘views’, selections of which were exhibited at the Vienna World Exhibition in ...

Article

James Crump

(fl Yokohama, 1880–1912).

Japanese photographer. He is considered among the foremost photographers in Japan during the late 19th century, although information about him is scarce. He was apprenticed to the Austrian photographer Baron von Stillfried-Rathenitz, Raimund, and his work is informed by the European colonial tradition of studio photography, in which Japanese ‘types’ were recorded primarily for touristic export. In 1885 he purchased von Stillfried-Rathenitz’s studio. Kusakabe’s enterprise produced thousands of genre photographs depicting local merchants, craftsmen, prostitutes, geishas, children and the Japanese working class (e.g. Vegetable Vendor, 1880s; Salem, MA, Peabody Mus., see Worswick, p. 111). As one of the Treaty ports during the Meiji period (1868–1912), Yokohama had a thriving photographic trade, and Kusakabe’s studio portraits were in great demand by tourists in search of the exotic and romanticized Asian ‘Other’. Posed before a studio backdrop and photographed frontally and in full length, his subjects were presented in a manner highly influenced by European conventions but with more pronounced individuality and psychological character. As he himself was Japanese, his work marks a subtle transition in the way Japanese ‘types’ were portrayed, the photographs being imbued with a greater sense of emotion. After ...

Article

Reena Jana

[Lee Seung-Hee]

(b Kye-Chang, Korea, 1970).

Korean photographer and filmmaker. Lee is known for her self-portraits, in which she presents herself in various ethnic and societal roles, from a middle-aged, low-income Hispanic party hostess to a young, wealthy Asian businesswoman. Lee received her BFA from the Chung-Ang University in South Korea in 1993, an AAS from the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York in 1996, and an MA in Photography, New York University, 1999. For her Projects series (1997–2001), Lee immersed herself in various American communities for extended time, from a clique of teenage skateboarders to executives who work in midtown Manhattan, informing group members of her status as an artist while assuming the wardrobe, hairstyle and mannerisms of a fictional character she sought to portray. She then asked members of these social groups to photograph her using everyday cameras and no enhanced lighting or backgrounds. The result is a series of snapshot-like images depicting the artist taking on a multitude of temporary personalities. When seen together, the photographs suggest a mosaic of American experiences....

Article

Erika Billeter

(b Italy, 1835; d Italy, after 1870).

Italian photographer, active in Argentina. An avid traveller, he visited India and China before opening a studio in Buenos Aires, Argentina, where he worked from 1865 to 1870. He was among the first photographers to discover the beauty of the Argentine Pampa and to make portraits of its picturesque Gauchos. Through his photographic books, which were available on a subscription basis, the Pampa was opened up for tourists. In ...

Article

(b Komotau [now Chomutov, Czech Republic], Aug 6, 1839; d Vienna, Aug 12, 1911).

Austrian photographer and painter, active in Japan. He was a member of an aristocratic Austrian family. Although an experienced painter, he is known chiefly as a photographer, whose studio in Yokohama was immensely successful during the last quarter of the 19th century. Information on his formal training and his formative development as a photographer is sparse. He served as an officer, diplomat and reporter for the Austro-Hungarian Empire, and it is known that his travels to Asia, notably Siam (now Thailand) and China, were the staging-grounds for his first successful efforts in photography. It is probable that in these places he began to discern an interest by Europeans in Orientalia and realized the commercial potential of photographic representations of Asian ‘types’ and genre scenes of the region. Subsequently settling in Yokohama, he purchased the studio of the well-known photographer Felice Beato in 1877, and worked almost exclusively as a studio portrait photographer, producing thousands of images of the working classes, actors in the theatre, geishas and craftsmen, primarily for tourists visiting the city. He is perhaps best known for his photographic album book ...

Article

Ray McKenzie

(b Edinburgh, June 14, 1837; d London, Sept 30, 1921).

Scottish photographer and writer. After studying chemistry at Edinburgh University he settled on the island of Pinang, Malaysia, where he began practising as a professional photographer in 1862. Over the next 12 years he travelled extensively in the region, taking many photographs in Siam (now Thailand; see fig.), Cambodia, Vietnam and China. His subjects ranged from ethnography to antiquities, and his style is distinguished by the directness with which he represented landscapes and social practices that to his western contemporaries appeared almost fantastic. Despite acute difficulties of climate and terrain, he used the cumbersome wet collodion process, producing large-format (up to 360×480 mm) and stereographic negatives that are noted for their clarity of detail and richness of tone.

Unlike most travel photographers of his generation Thomson rarely exhibited his work, preferring the illustrated album as the medium best suited to his documentary approach. In all he produced nine such albums, varying widely both in format and reprographic process. The first, ...

Article

Aileen June Wang

(b Hong Kong, 1950; d New York, March 10, 1990).

Chinese–American performance artist and photographer. Tseng grew up in Hong Kong, but immigrated to Canada with his family in 1966. He attended two years of university there before studying art in Paris from 1970 to 1974 at the Ecole Superior d’Arts Graphiques and the Académie Julian. He inherited an interest in photography from his father, who frequently photographed his family with a camera acquired while he was in the Nationalist Army. Experiences as a Chinese living abroad inspired Tseng’s East Meets West project, which defined his career from 1979 until his death from AIDS in 1990. The series of photographs examined the significance of tourist attractions as signs of nation and power, the intersection of local and visitor at these sites and the reception of the Chinese as the cultural other.

Tseng met Keith Haring after settling in Manhattan’s East Village in 1978 and the two became close friends and collaborators. He photographed Haring in the act of painting in his studio, the subway and other public venues, producing more than 40,000 images (Keith Haring Documentary Archives, Tseng Kwong Chi Estate). Both artists believed that the process of making art was like a performance and contributed to the meaning of the work. This perspective informed Tseng’s ...

Article

Terence Pitts

(b West Carlisle, OH, April 8, 1871; d Mexico City, July 8, 1925).

American photographer and teacher . A self-taught photographer, he began taking photographs in 1893 and soon developed a style that showed the influence of Whistler, Sargent and Japanese prints. He was elected to the Linked Ring, Brotherhood of the group of Pictorial photographers in 1900 and was a leading member of the Photo-Secession from 1902. His evocative photographs of rural landscapes and of his family celebrate the joys and virtues of the simple, middle-class way of life that existed in the USA before World War I (e.g. Ring Toss , 1899; New York, Met.)

By 1906 White was already a major figure in American photography and moved to New York, where he began a close professional and artistic relationship with Alfred Stieglitz that lasted until 1912. His work was published in Camera Work in July 1903, Jan 1905, July 1908, July 1909 and Oct 1910. In 1908 he began teaching photography, founding in ...