Image: 17.5 x 20.2 cm (6 7/8 x 7 15/16 in.); Paper: 17.5 x 20.2 cm (6 7/8 x 7 15/16 in.)
Severance and Greta Millikin Purchase Fund 2022.89
Serbonne borrows its composition and setting from two famous and infamous paintings: Manet’s Dejeuner Sur l’Herbe and Titian’s Concert Champetre.
In summer 1901, photographer Gertrude Käsebier and her daughter, an art student, traveled to France and became fast friends with American painter and photographer Edward Steichen (on the left).This posed photograph, taken in the woods of Serbonne outside Paris, documents one of their adventures. Käsebier replaced the textures of the tree bark, grass, and fabric with an overall texture on her negative so that the photograph appears to be composed of brushstrokes, associating her creation with artistic transformation rather than a recording of reality.
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