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Incidents (excerpt), by Igor and Svetlana Kopystiansky


[View of the Seine, Paris]

Gustave Le Gray (French, 1820–1884)

Albumen silver print from glass negative
Image: 38.5 x 50.9; Mount: 49.5 x 60.7
Credit Line:
Gilman Collection, Gift of The Howard Gilman Foundation, 2005
Accession Number:
  • Description

    Le Gray was the central figure in French photography of the 1850s—an artist of the first order, a teacher, and the author of several widely distributed instructional manuals. Born in the outskirts of Paris the only child of a haberdasher, Le Gray studied painting in the studio of Paul Delaroche and made his first daguerreotypes by 1847. His real contributions, however, came in the realm of paper photography. Le Gray produced some of his most popular and memorable works in 1856, 1857, and 1858, including views of Fontainebleau Forest, a series of dramatic seascapes, and Paris itself.

  • Signatures, Inscriptions, and Markings

    Inscription: Inscribed on print, verso, from TL: "Collection M. Retter - Le Palais de l'Industrie est construit (1855); Le Pont Solferino ne l'est pas (1858-1859) mais on aperçoit des picots; Remarquer le niveau très bas de la Seine; Au Palais de l'Institut, les premières arcades sont ouvertes et forment passages; Le Pavillon de Flore et de la Galerie au bord de l'eau n'ont pas encore été reconstruit part le Fuel 1863-1868; Il n'y a qu'un etroit guichet en face le pont des St. Pères."; inscribed on mount, recto, from BL: "Photo prise vers 1857. Le pavillion de Flore n'a pas encore ete reconstruit par Le Fuel 1863-1868. Le pont Solferino n'est pas encore construit (1858-1859)"

  • Provenance

    M. Retter; Georges Sirot; [François Braunschweig]; Gilman Paper Company Collection, November 13, 1978

  • See also