Book of the Week

Erwin Blumenfeld

“Our pictures are the essence of a page and every page has to have its own face, its own spirit, to catch millions of eyes or it’s only a scrap of printed matter”.

 

An exhibition of the works of Erwin Blumenfeld is now installed at the Jeu de Paume in Paris after an extensive world tour. Available with the show is an essential catalogue on Blumenfeld curated by Francois Cheval, director of the Musée Nicephore Niepce. Named for the French inventor of the photographic process, the Musée Niepce is a gem of a museum in France dedicated exclusively to photography and its history. Consequently, M. Cheval brings an aesthetic sensitivity in presenting these unforgettable color plates, but also brings an exceptionally well educated eye in writing of the inner characteristics of the photographic methods of emulsion development and the digital reproductions used by Blumenfeld in his New York studio in the 1940’s and 50’s when color was in its infancy. Thus he writes: “Blumenfeld loved perfection of form, and also its duplicity. Faithful to his pre-war gestures, he takes his same themes and alters them slightly. An image duplicates itself: a figure is multiplied, solarized, superimposed..”, both gesture and technique are fully explored with the help of Folkwang Museum and Blumenfeld Archive. Blumenfeld, born in Berlin in 1918, had a successful career in photography in Amsterdam and Paris. He spent the war in a concentration camp. Moving to America after the war, he opened a photography studio at 222 Central Park South in New York, where his work pioneered newer processes of color technique, presented here.

 

Erwin Blumenfeld 

Blumenfeld Studio – Color, New York, 1941-1960

Musée Nicéphore Niépce, Chalon-sur-Saône – Museum Folkwang, Essen

Steidl publishing

23 x 28 cm, pp. 208,  40.00 euro

On sale at Galleria Carla Sozzani Bookshop

Posted on: Thursday, October 24th, 2013

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