mercredi 8 février 2012

Lyonel Feininger

Untitled (Night View of Trees and Streetlamp, Burgkühnauer Allee, Dessau), 1928. Gelatin silver print, 6 15/16 x 9 5/16 in. Credit: gift of T. Lux Feininger, Houghton Library, Harvard University. © Artists Rights Society, New York / VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn.

Hitler declared his paintings degenerate. Of course, Lyonel Feininger was actually one of the 20th century’s most important American avant-garde artists: at various times a Cubist, Expressionist and Secessionist. He’s also well known as one of the Bauhaus’s original faculty, and was even a distinguished newspaper comic strip artist. But a photographer? Really?
Truth is, Feininger didn’t even pick up a camera until 1928, when he was in his late 50s and had fallen under the influence of his sons Andreas and T. Lux and, primarily, of fellow Bauhaus master László Moholy-Nagy. And he considered his photographing to be more of an experimental – and inspirational – means to a painterly end. But a recent exhibition has shed new light on this practically unknown aspect of his already formidable career.
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