Aug 22, 2007

Alexandre Dumas père (1802-1870)

Alexandre Dumas père (1802-1870)



(French, 1820–1910)

Salted paper print from wet collodion negative

Image: 23.8 x 17.8 cm (9 3/8 x 7 in.); Matted: 45.7 x 35.6 cm (18 x 14 in.)

John L. Severance Fund 1983.198



Nadar was a journalist, novelist, cartoonist, balloonist, lithographer, and, beginning in 1849, photographer. Like Brady’s establishments in America, Nadar’s Parisian studio quickly became a center for celebrity photography, selling compelling images of the major political and cultural figures of the time. Nadar avoided symbolic props and elaborate backgrounds; he let his sitters choose their own pose, putting them at ease enough to reveal glimpses of their true character. Dumas, one of France’s most popular authors, wrote The Three Musketeers. The year this portrait was made, he and Nadar were hoping to collaborate on a play, but their only joint production seems to have been this casual, intimate portrait.

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