SOLD - Karl Blossfeldt Plant Photogravure in Carved Leaf Frame

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SOLD - Karl Blossfeldt Plant Photogravure in Carved Leaf Frame

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A Karl Blossfeldt (German, 1865-1932) photogravure of an enlarged leaf rosette in a 19th century Spanish style carved wood frame from Paris. The plant depicted is Saxifrage Wilkommiana, (William's saxifrage), a leaf-rosette, which has been enlarged 8 times. We love the graphic quality of this botanical photograph and how perfectly paired it is with the frame which features ebonized carved leaves with gilded highlights and gilded fillet. The frame is earlier, circa 1890's, than the print, the edition of which we are not certain (1928-1953)?

Height: 17 3/4"     Width: 16"     Depth: 1  1/2"    

$1,475

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Blossfeldt made many of his photographs with a home-made camera that could magnify the subject up to thirty times its size, revealing details within a plant's natural structure. Appointed for a teaching post at the Institute of Royal Arts Museum in 1898 (where he remained until 1930), he established an archive for his photographs. Blossfeldt never received formal training in photography. Blossfeldt developed a series of home-made cameras that allowed him to photograph plant surfaces in unprecedented magnified detail. This reflected his enduring interest in the repetitive patterns found in nature's textures and forms. In Berlin from the late nineteenth century until his death, Blossfeldt’s works were primarily used as teaching tools and were brought to public attention in 1928 by his first publication Urformen der Kunst (Art Forms in Nature). Published in 1928 when Blossfeldt was 63 and a professor of applied art at the Vereinigte Staatsschulen für freie und angewandte Kunst, Urformen der Kunst quickly became an international bestseller and in turn, made Blossfeldt famous almost overnight. His contemporaries were impressed by the abstract shapes and structures in nature that he revealed. Swiftly regarded as a seminal book on photography, Blossfeldt’s objective and finely detailed imagery was praised by Walter Benjamin,[5] who declared that Blossfeldt ‘has played his part in that great examination of the inventory of perception, which will have an unforeseeable effect on our conception of the world’. He compared him to Maholy-Nagy and the pioneers of New Objectivity, and ranked his achievements alongside the great photographers August Sander and Eugene Atget. The Surrealists also championed him, and George Bataille included his images in the periodical Documents in 1929. In 2001 Urformen der Kunst was included in The Book of 101 Books as one of the seminal photographic books of the twentieth century. (Source for the above 3 paragraphs: Wikipedia entry on Karl Blossfeldt)