Artist: Edward J. Steichen (American (born Luxembourg), Bivange 1879–1973 West Redding, Connecticut)
Medium: Platinum print
Dimensions: 14.7 x 14.7 cm (5 13/16 x 5 13/16 in.)
Credit Line: Gift of Grace M. Mayer, 1990
Accession Number: 1990.1042
Rights and Reproduction: © 2016 Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York
Softly rendered, misty woods were already a favorite subject of Steichen before he left Milwaukee in 1900. During his first visit to France (1900–1902), he produced this softly nuanced treatment of the theme in Voulangis, a small town just east of Paris, where he would later buy a house and settle his family. A master printer in many photographic media, Steichen was capable of wresting bold contrasts and surprising colors from his materials. In Voulangis he pushed the platinum print in the opposite direction, forsaking the medium’s characteristic deep, velvety blacks in favor of a lilac gray, a palpable mist through which the forms of trees and a pony barely emerge from a dream world into visibility.