Abstract Composition

Florence Henri American

Not on view

Initially a painter who studied under Fernand Léger, Henri turned to photography in 1927 after attending a summer course at the Bauhaus with László Moholy-Nagy. The influence of both heritages is apparent in this powerful abstract image. Henri arranges smooth, industrially produced objects—a round ball and a metal grate—against mirrors to create a play of space and reflective surface. Simultaneously, she imbues her objects with stasis and poise that resonates with the universalizing impulse of Purism, a painting movement advocated and practiced by such artists as Léger, Amédée Ozenfant, and Le Corbusier, which sought to depict the simple, essential geometries of everyday objects.

Abstract Composition, Florence Henri (American, 1893–1982), Gelatin silver print

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