‘5e arrondissement’ [Peddler, Place Saint-Médard, 5th District]
The Carnavalet Museum (Paris) presents the Parisian work of one of the most famous photographers of the 20th century, Eugène Atget (Libourne, 1857 – Paris, 1927).
The exhibition proposes a selection of 230 prints created in Paris between 1898 and 1927 from the collections of the Carnavalet Museum, in addition to those of the George Eastman House in Rochester and the collections of the Fundación Mapfre in Madrid.
This retrospective, which brings together some well-known images and others previously unseen, paints an unusual portrait of the capital, far from the clichés of the Belle Époque.
Visitors will discover the streets of the Paris of old, the gardens, the quays of the Seine, the former boutiques and the travelling salesmen. Atget’s photographs also reveal the changes in his processes: when he started out, this self-taught photographer tried to bring together landscapes and motifs and then images of Paris streets, in order to sell them to artists as models.
It was when he dedicated himself to the streets of Paris that he attracted the attention of prestigious institutions such as the Carnavalet Museum and the National Library, which were to become his main clients until the end of his life. (read more)
April 25 – July 29, 2012 at Carnavalet Museum / Paris
#1: Prostitute offering her services before her door, La Villette, rue Asselin, Mar. 1921
#2: Chiffonier, 1899-1900
#3: Group of Romanies [gypsies], 1912
#4: During the eclipse, 1912
Outside his studio in 19th-century Paris hung a sign that declared “documents pour artistes” - documents for artists - declaring his modest ambition to create images for other artists to use as source material.This humility belied the visual sophistication and distinctive vision that characterized much of Atget’s own work.
Whether exploring the urban texture of Paris’ fifth arrondissement throughout the first quarter of the 20th century, or the abandoned grandeur of the parks at Sceaux during a remarkable creative outburst in the spring of 1925, Atget captured the essence of his chosen subject through the camera’s lens with increasing sensitivity throughout his career. (read more here and here)
Drawing from its expansive collection of Atget’s work, the Museum of Modern Art in New York will present a selection of more than 100 images, as an exhibition titled with inspiration from the artist himself: Documents Pour Artistes.
Exhibition dates: Feb. 3 - April 9, 2012 / MoMA New York
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