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Edouard Baldus: First Show in London at James Hyman Photography

Posted By Administration, Monday, October 22, 2012
Updated: Friday, January 03, 2014

Baldus and the Modern Landscape:
Important Salt Prints of Paris from the 1850's


Through November 9, 2012


Baldus and the Modern Landscape marks the first significant exhibition of work by the French photographer in London. The exhibition drew from private loans and includes a selection of available works. Some exhibiting prints were earlier seen in the Metropolitan Museum of Art's 1996 Baldus exhibition, and other important prints were more recently discovered.

Baldus is considered the greatest architectural photographer of the 19th Century, but the works are signifigant on other levels. Their social-historical significance is of obvious interest. The works that form this show document the changes Paris was undergoing in the 1850's- its modernization under Napoleon III and the civic planner Baron Haussman.

In 1851, Baldus was asked by the French Historic Monuments Commission to photograph historic buildings, bridges, and monuments. Many of the commissioned works recorded monuments that would be raised to make way for the new, modern Paris. The show reads as a city in transition. Somehow these pieces paused time, and we are transported back. We are able to recognize many places, but there are just as many moments that seem almost the same, somewhat familiar, or completely altered. This is the joy for the contemporary viewer- to look back to a past with clarity and distinction as we grapple to identify what is and what was.

For more information on the show, please visit James Hyman Fine Art Photographs

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