Left to right: Eugène Atget Marchard d’abat jour, rue Lepic 1899-1900, albumen photograph, George Eastman House, International Museum of Photography and Film, Rochester; Boulevard de Strasbourg 1912, albumen photograph, George Eastman House, International Museum of Photography and Film, Rochester; Rue Hautefeuille, 6th arrondissement 1898, albumen photograph © Musée Carnavalet, Paris/Roger-Viollet/TopFoto
Lose yourself in the beauty of Old Paris with over 200 rare and original prints from the founder of documentary photography.
His bellows camera, glass plates and printing technique may link him to earlier 19th-century photography, but the vision of Eugène Atget (1857–1927) was an astonishingly modern one.
The best of Atget’s work is revealed through his images of the streets of Old Paris. In a time of rapid transformation, Atget captured the buildings, gardens, old shops and streets that had not been touched by Baron Haussmann’s 19th-century modernisation program. We are shown a city remote from the clichés of the Belle Époque, a genuine glimpse into the past of this iconic metropolis.
Considered the founder of documentary photography, Atget and his enigmatic images inspired numerous artists including Brassaï, the Surrealists, Walker Evans and Berenice Abbott, as well as Man Ray, who collected some of the photographs included in the exhibition.
For the first time in Australia, the work of this influential photographer is showcased in a major exhibition of over 200 original prints. Rarely permitted to travel due to their fragile nature, loans come primarily from the Musée Carnavalet, Paris, alongside the selection of prints compiled by Man Ray from George Eastman House, Rochester, USA. The Art Gallery of New South Wales is the only Australian venue.
The exhibition is jointly organised by Fundación Mapfre, Nederlands Fotomuseum, Art Gallery of NSW, Musée Carnavalet-Histoire de Paris, and Paris Musées.