Art/ Collection/ Collection/ Art Object

Aloe

Artist:
Imogen Cunningham (American, Portland, Oregon 1883–1976 San Francisco, California)
Date:
1920s
Medium:
Gelatin silver print
Dimensions:
30.8 x 22.5 cm (12 1/8 x 8 7/8 in.)
Classification:
Photographs
Credit Line:
Ford Motor Company Collection, Gift of Ford Motor Company and John C. Waddell, 1987
Accession Number:
1987.1100.28
Rights and Reproduction:
© The Imogen Cunningham Trust
Not on view
The unsuspected beauty of the enlargements of leaves, stems, and buds in the book Art Forms in Nature by Karl Blossfeldt (1928) intrigued the public of the period. The American West Coast photographer Imogen Cunningham also worked with plants in the late 1920s, and her results were also acclaimed (ten of her plant photographs were seen in Film und Foto). Whereas Blossfeldt, a German professor of fine and applied art, examined botanical specimens to the art of nature's design, Cunningham was not interested in plants but in pictures--in the art she could design with plants and light, and a camera.
Inscription: Signed in pencil, recto LR beneath image: "Imogen Cunningham"; inscribed in pencil, recto LL and LR beneath image: "Printed in the 1920's", "Succulent in bud"; stamped, verso UC: "IMOGEN CUNNINGHAM // 1331 [illegible] ST. // SAN FRANCISCO 9,"; inscribed in red pencil, verso UR: "X";
Artist to Lee Witkin, 1970; (sale, Sotheby's, New York, May 11, 1983, Lot #370, to Houk/Lagnado); [Edwynn Houk to Waddell, October 14, 1983]; John C. Waddell

One of four known existing vintage prints; one is in the Julien Levy Collection of the Art Institute of Chicago; one is in the collection of the Los Angeles County Museum; and one is in the private collection of a friend of Roi Partridge; the last of these was in the 1983 Cunningham show at the American Federation of Arts.
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