The birth and early development of photography will be surveyed at Hans P. Kraus Jr. at The AIPAD Photography Show New York from March 29 – April 1, 2012 at the Park Avenue Armory. Among the early masters represented will be William Henry Fox Talbot, Julia Margaret Cameron, Gustave Le Gray, Henri Courmont, and the circle of French sculptor Charles Simart. The images include salt prints from 1839 through the 1850s, and a daguerreotype from the 1850s.
A highlight of the exhibition will be one of the earliest photographs ever taken – a unique, lavender-colored photogenic drawing of a plant with small leaves by William Henry Fox Talbot, circa 1839. Talbot conceived the idea of photography during the 1830s, combining the use of the camera obscura with light-sensitive chemistry. His negative/positive process proved to be the forerunner of modern photography. The Martyrs' Monument, Oxford, 1843, will also be on view. It is a rare variant of the image included in Talbot’s landmark book, The Pencil of Nature, the first photographically illustrated book published commercially.
A number of extraordinary portraits will be on exhibit at Hans P. Kraus Jr. including work by British photographer Julia Margaret Cameron. Among the 19th century’s greatest portraitists, Cameron began her career in photography at the age of 48 when she received a camera as a gift from her daughter. Cameron moved in the highest circles of Victorian society and counted artists, writers, and scientists among her close friends. Her albumen print portraits of the astronomer Sir John Herschel, 1867, and the American poet, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, 1868, will be on view, along with a portrait of the artist, a carbon print, circa 1879, by her son, Henry Herschel Hay Cameron.
A remarkable whole-plate daguerreotype from the 1850s portrays two actors in a popular 19th-century melodrama, Robert Macaire. The photographer, Rufus P. Anson, hand tinted the image in his studio at 589 Broadway in New York City.
Early French photographers will be well represented by a wall of 1850s landscapes from paper negatives by Gustave Le Gray, Eugène Cuvelier, Henri Courmont, and Joseph, vicomte Vigier, depicting the beautiful French countryside, the Forest of Fontainebleau, and the bold, majestic Pyrénées.
Male nude with arms outstretched is an exuberant French academic study, unusual for its time. This impressive salt print from an enlarged collodion negative was made by an unidentified photographer, attributed to the circle of the French sculptor Charles Simart. The work is from the Simart Album, assembled 1856-1860, that includes unusual studies of nudes and apple trees. Two nudes from this series are in the collection of The Metropolitan Museum of Art.
Hans P. Kraus, Jr. has been established in New York since 1984 as a dealer in 19th and early 20th century photographs. The gallery is a member of the ADAA, PADA, and AIPAD, participating regularly in the Winter Antiques Show, The Art Show, TEFAF Maastricht, Art Basel, Paris Photo, and Masterpiece London. Hans P. Kraus Jr. Fine Photographs is located at 962 Park Avenue at 82nd Street in New York City. For more information, please contact 212-794-2064 or firstname.lastname@example.org.