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Preparation for circumcision ceremony

printed 1978


Axel Poignant

England, Australia, England

12 Dec 1906 – 05 Feb 1986

No image
  • Details

    Other Title
    Preparation for ceremony
    printed 1978
    Media category
    Materials used
    gelatin silver photograph
    42.2 x 42.4 cm image; 60.6 x 50.6 cm sheet
    Signature & date

    Signed and dated l.r. sheet, ink "Axel Poignant '78". Dated l.l. sheet, ink "...1952".

    Purchased 1978
    Not on display
    Accession number
    Unable to display image due to cultural restrictions
    Artist information
    Axel Poignant

    Works in the collection


  • About

    Though not born in Australia, Axel Poignant's work is largely about the 'Outback', its flora and fauna and the traditions of Australian and Indigenous identity. Poignant was born in Yorkshire in 1906 to a Swedish father and English mother, and arrived in Australia in 1926 seeking work and adventure. After tough early years of unemployment and homelessness, he eventually settled in Perth and found work as a portrait photographer, before taking to the road and the bush in search of new subjects. Poignant became fascinated with the photo-essay as a means of adding real humanity to the medium, and much of his work is in this form. The close relationships he developed with Aborigines on his travels are recorded in compassionate portraits of these people and their lives - the low angles and closely cropped frames appear more natural and relaxed than the stark compositions of earlier ethnographic photography.

  • Exhibition history

    Shown in 1 exhibition

  • Bibliography

    Referenced in 1 publication

Other works by Axel Poignant

See all 41 works