A chemist and physicist known for his studies in thermodynamics and the properties of gases, Henri-Victor Regnault was director of France's renowned Sèvres porcelain factory from 1852 to 1871. He was also a master of early scientific, portrait, and landscape photography. Aside from a technical interest in its practical application, Regnault accepted photography as a means of personal expression. In this poetic image, the aerial viewpoint and soft light and shadow unite the strong, geometric forms of the town and factory buildings with the dense foliage of the surrounding countryside.
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