Art/ Collection/ Art Object

Jérusalem, Saint Sépulcre, abside

Artist:
Auguste Salzmann (French, 1824–1872)
Printer:
Imprimerie photographique de Blanquart-Évrard, à Lille (French, active 1851–55)
Date:
1854
Medium:
Salted paper print from paper negative
Dimensions:
Image: 23.5 x 31 cm (9 1/4 x 12 3/16 in.) Mount: 44.6 x 60.2 cm (17 9/16 x 23 11/16 in.)
Classification:
Photographs
Credit Line:
Gilman Collection, Gift of The Howard Gilman Foundation, 2005
Accession Number:
2005.100.373.100
Not on view
Despite the blinding desert light, Salzmann sensitively renders the undulating forms of the church’s structure, accumulated over centuries, in this view of the apse and dome. Unable to record the interior with his camera, he photographed every angle he could of the exterior. In the late 1860s, as part of an international effort to repair the church led by France’s Empress Eugénie, Salzmann was commissioned to decorate its interior as a painter. He fell out of favor with the lead architect, however, and may not have completed the project.
Inscription: Inscribed in negative, recto BL: "77"; printed on mount, recto BC: "Aug. Salzmann // JÉRUSALEM // SAINT SÉPULCRE // Abside // Gide et J. Baudry, éditeurs. // Imp. Photogr. de Blanquart - Evrard, à Lille."; inscribed in pencil on mount, recto TR: "100"; inscribed in pencil on mount, recto BL: "[scribble mark]";
André Jammes Collection; [Graphics International, Ltd.]; Gilman Paper Company Collection, New York, October 7, 1978

American Bible Society, New York. "The Jerusalem Project: The Dome Restoration in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre," June 6, 1998–July 6, 1998.

The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Faith and Photography: Auguste Salzmann in the Holy Land," September 12, 2016–February 5, 2017.

Perez, Nissan. "An Artist in Jerusalem: Auguste Salzmann." The Israel Museum Journal 1 (Spring 1982). pp. 19–50.



In 1854, Auguste Salzmann created approximately two hundred paper negatives during a four-month sojourn in Jerusalem. He recorded sixty-eight sites and categorized them, with some exceptions, by monotheistic religion—Judaism, Christianity, or Islam. Many of the resulting salted paper prints were circulated privately soon after his return to Paris. In 1856, the album, Jerusalem: A Study and Photographic Reproduction of the Holy City, was first advertised as a commercial endeavor for a wider public. Photographic plates were distributed three at a time over fifty-eight installments from September 1856 through 1859. All of Salzmann’s Jerusalem photographs were printed by the preeminent Blanquart-Évrard firm of Lille, France, while their distribution was managed by Gide et Baudry of Paris. Each album was meant to include two volumes of photographic plates accompanied by an archaeological treatise authored by Salzmann. The album in The Met collection is complete with 174 unbound photographic plates.
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