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Portrait Photography

In the 1830s, Nièpce discovered the process for setting images onto pewter plates. In 1833, upon Nièpce’s death, Louis Daguerre and François Arago continued his experiments and invented the daguerreotype, a process which created a printed image on a silver plate that had been exposed to light. Photography was born.

Similarly to how portrait painting had dominated artistic output in previous centuries, portrait photography was to become the pillar of the Second French Empire’s photographic industry. Lenses with a shorter focal length, which enabled reduced exposure times, gradually appear on the market. The required equipment was expensive and difficult to handle. Some photographers, called daguerreotypists, decided to open their own photography studios to make a profit from their endeavours. The daguerreotype process was temperamental, and photographers had to take their pictures with great precision and attention to detail. They welcomed many people into their studios and customers choose how they wished to be photographed from catalogue of poses. Originally only accessible to the bourgeoisie, lower prices resulting from the growing number of studios eventually attracted a wider customer base. This phenomenon infuriated the poet Charles Baudelaire who was frustrated by the sense of narcissism sparked by the daguerreotypists.

Despite his protests, the egotistical trend only grew with the emergence of ‘carte de visite’ portraits (small photographs, the size of today’s business cards). These were the brainchild of Adolphe Eugène Disdéri came up with the idea of producing portraits akin to visiting cards in 1859. He printed eight portraits in a variety of poses onto a single plate and once developed they could be cut up into eight distinct “visiting cards”. Very popular with the bourgeoisie, they highlighted the sitters’ social status. ‘Carte de visite’ portraits featuring celebrities were also sold to customers, who could subsequently add them to their albums.

The photographer Nadar was one of the first to demonstrate a conscious artistic approach to producing these portraits. He emphasised facial expressions and ensured the sitter was comfortable and at ease before taking the photograph. He photographed the era’s greatest thinkers and artists, including Honoré de Balzac, George Sand, and Victor Hugo. He even managed to reconcile Baudelaire with portraiture.

At the end of the 19th century, the art of photography started to enter the mainstream, with the arrival of the Kodak company. The use of the camera, and the taking of portraits, became everyday occurrences. A century later, it was the invention of the digital camera which challenged the status quo. Whereas before alterations could only be made to photographs when they were being taken or developed, with the digital camera editing became easier, quicker and more convenient. Digital photography has given photographers much more freedom when it comes to editing and new methods and techniques are constantly being explored.

Some of the photographers who have left their mark on the last century include: Cindy Sherman, who excelled in self-portraits, Annie Leibovitz, who captured celebrities, the wacky duo, Pierre and Gilles, as well as Diane Arbus, Irving Penn, Richard Avedon, Helmut Newton, and Bettina Rheims.

So, do portraits help us to learn more about each other, to remember, to invent, to act, or to reconnect with ourselves? Find out on Artsper, by exploring the works of Formento & Formento, Naomi Vona, Ahmed Bennani, Chou Ching Hui, Samuel Cueto, Brno del Zou, Ren Hang, Markus + Indrani, Jerome Liebling as well as Annina Roescheisen.



Collector’s Guide: Collecting Fine Art Photographs

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price,500 facet,10503*Oeuvres d’artistes best sellers|icon-bestsellers*bestsellers facet,10503*Artworks by best-selling artists|icon-bestsellers*bestsellers facet,10503*Werke von Bestseller-Künstlern|icon-bestsellers*werke-von-kunstlern-bestseller facet,10503*Obras de los artistas más vendidos|icon-bestsellers*obras-de-los-artistas-mas-vendidos price,501:1000 price,1001:5000 facet,10500*Oeuvres d'artistes émergents|icon-youngtalents*jeunes-talents facet,10500*Young Talents|icon-youngtalents*youngtalents facet,10500*Obras de artistas emergentes|icon-youngtalents*obras-de-artistas-emergentes facet,10500*Werke aufstrebender Künstler|icon-youngtalents*werke-von-jungen-kunstlern category,6*Peinture*peinture category,6*Painting*painting category,6*Pintura*pintura category,6*Gemälde*gemalde facet,8259*Nos recommandations|icon-recommendations*recommandations facet,8259*Our recommendations|icon-recommendations*recommendations facet,8259*unsere Empfehlungen|icon-recommendations*unsere-empfehlungen facet,8259*Nuestras recomendaciones|icon-recommendations*nuestras-recomendaciones facet,8274*Moyen (\u003c 115 x 115 cm)|medium*moyen facet,1629*Abstraite*abstraite facet,1629*abstrakt*abstrakt facet,1629*abstracto*abstracto facet,1629*Abstract*abstract facet,10497*Oeuvres d'artistes célèbres|icon-masterpieces*artistes-celebres facet,10497*Artworks by famous artists|icon-masterpieces*masterpieces facet,10497*Werke berühmter Künstler|icon-masterpieces*werke-beruhmter-kunstler facet,10497*Obras de artistas famosos|icon-masterpieces*obras-de-artistas-famosos facet,8277*Grand (\u003c 200 x 200 cm)|large*grand facet,8277*Grand (\u003c 80 x 80 inch)|large*grand facet,1635*Street art*street-art facet,1635*Straßenkunst*street-art facet,1635*arte callejero*arte-callejero facet,1671*Landscape*nature facet,1671*Natur*natur facet,1671*Paysage*nature facet,1671*Nature*nature facet,1671*Naturaleza*naturaleza category,5*Sculpture*sculpture category,5*Skulptur*skulptur category,5*Escultura*escultura category,9*Fotografie*fotografie category,9*Photographie*photographie category,9*Photography*photography category,9*Fotografía*fotografia facet,1686*Pop Art*pop-art facet,1686*Pop-Art*pop-art facet,1686*Arte pop*arte-pop facet,8277*Large (\u003c 200 x 200 cm)|large*large facet,8277*Large (\u003c 80 x 80 inch)|large*large facet,1644*Porträt*portrat facet,1644*Portrait*portrait facet,1644*Retrato*retrato facet,1641*Nude*nude facet,1641*Akt*akte facet,1641*Nus*nus facet,1641*desnudos*desnudos price,1000:501 facet,8274*Medium (\u003c 115 x 115 cm)|medium*medium facet,8274*Medium (\u003c 45 x 45 inch)|medium*medium category,23*Dessin*dessin category,23*Zeichnung*zeichnung category,23*Dibujo*dibujo category,23*Fine Art Drawings*drawing facet,8280*Très grand (\u003e 200 x 200 cm)|very-large*tres-grand facet,8280*Très grand (\u003e 80 x 80 inch)|very-large*tres-grand category,15*Edition*edition category,15*Druck*editionen category,15*Print*print category,15*Edición*edicion facet,1830*Paysage|landscape*orientation-paysage facet,1830*Landscape|landscape*orientation-landscape facet,1830*Landschaft|landscape*orientation-landschaft facet,1830*Paisaje|landscape*orientation-paisaje facet,8301*Special offers|icon-promotions*promotions facet,8301*Trabajos en promoción|icon-promotions*trabajos-en-promocion facet,8301*Oeuvres en promotion|icon-promotions*promotions facet,8301*Special Offers|icon-promotions*vergunstigte-werke facet,8271*Petit (\u003c 50 x 50 cm)|small*petit facet,1827*Portrait|portrait*orientation-portrait facet,1827*Hochformat|portrait*orientation-portrat facet,1827*Retrato|portrait*orientation-retrato facet,1680*Animaux*animaux facet,1680*Animal*animal facet,1680*Animales*animales facet,1680*Tier*tier facet,1674*Scène de vie*scene-de-vie facet,1674*Everyday life*everyday-life facet,1674*Escena de la vida*escena-de-la-vida facet,1674*Etchleben*etchleben facet,1668*Black and white*black-and-white facet,1668*Schwarz und weiß*schwarz-und-weiss facet,1668*Noir et blanc*noir-et-blanc facet,1668*Blanco y negro*blanco-y-negro facet,1632*Architecture*architecture facet,1632*Die Architektur*die-architektur facet,1632*Arquitectura*arquitectura price,50001 facet,1659*Flore*flore facet,1659*Flora*flora facet,1659*Floral*floral facet,1659*Flores*flores facet,8280*Very large (\u003e 80 x 80 inch)|very-large*very-large facet,8280*Very large (\u003e 200 x 200 cm)|very-large*very-large price,5001:10000 facet,1650*Paysage urbain*paysage-urbain facet,1650*Urban Landscape*urban-landscape facet,1650*Paisaje urbano*paisaje-urbano facet,1650*Städtische Landschaft*stadtische-landschaft price,5000:1001 facet,12*noir|050002*noir facet,12*schwarz|050002*schwarz facet,12*Black|050002*black facet,12*negro|050002*negro facet,1692*Géométrique*geometrique facet,1692*Geometric*geometric facet,1692*Geometrisch*geometrisch facet,1692*Geometría*geometria price,10001:25000 facet,1656*Grafik*grafik facet,1656*Graphique*graphique facet,1656*Graphic*graphic facet,1656*Gráfico*grafico price,25001:50000 facet,30*Dark blue|0707BD*dark-blue facet,30*bleu foncé|0707BD*bleu-fonce facet,30*Dunkelblau|0707BD*dunkelblau facet,108*oil*oil facet,108*huile*huile facet,108*Öl*ol facet,108*al oleo*al-oleo
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Our recommendations Bert Stern, Marilyn Monroe: The Last Sitting Portfolio 4, Photography

Bert Stern

Marilyn Monroe: The Last Sitting Portfolio 4, 1962
24 x 24 inch
Photography

$20,000

Brno Del Zou, Sur les Chemins d'Alice - Dos à dos., Photography

Brno Del Zou

Sur les Chemins d'Alice - Dos à dos., 2021
13 x 8.7 x 0 inch
Photography

$231

Our recommendations Bernard Pras, Banania, Photography

Bernard Pras

Banania, 2014
38.2 x 31.9 x 1.2 inch
Photography

$5,770

Alen Opsar, Gag, Photography

Alen Opsar

Gag, 2021
27 x 21 x 0.1 inch
Photography

$1,500

Emanuele Cucuzza, WhatEyeAm VII, Photography

Emanuele Cucuzza

WhatEyeAm VII, 2011
35.4 x 23.6 inch
Photography

$1,154

Our recommendations Hassan Hajjaj, V.B.F., Photography

Hassan Hajjaj

V.B.F., 2011
28.3 x 18.9 x 0.4 inch
Photography

$19,617

Clara Delaporte, Gabrielle, Photography

Clara Delaporte

Gabrielle, 2021
15.7 x 23.6 x 0.4 inch
Photography

$1,731

Our recommendations Lina Redford, Magic of Her, Lina Redford 01 with Eric Ceccarini, Photography

Lina Redford

Magic of Her, Lina Redford 01 with Eric Ceccarini, 2019
63 x 41.7 x 2 inch
Photography

$9,231

Larry Snider, Boy and Girl, Photography

Larry Snider

Boy and Girl, 2008
12 x 12 x 0.25 inch
Photography

$600

Our recommendations Charlotte Abramow, Rouge sur Blanc, Photography

Charlotte Abramow

Rouge sur Blanc, 2018
3.9 x 5.9 inch
Photography

$519

Giana De Dier, Untitled (Woman Seated), Photography

Giana De Dier

Untitled (Woman Seated), 2020
11 x 9.8 x 0.4 inch
Photography

$1,385

Our recommendations Lucien Clergue, Picasso Preside la Corrida - Frejus, 1962, Photography

Lucien Clergue

Picasso Preside la Corrida - Frejus, 1962, 1962
18 x 22 inch
Photography

$12,000

Géraldine Rué, La maison bleue, Photography

Géraldine Rué

La maison bleue, 2015
11.7 x 16.5 inch
Photography

$196 $148

Our recommendations David Lynch, Emily scream #1, Photography

David Lynch

Emily scream #1, 2008
33.1 x 33.1 inch
Photography

$11,539

Our recommendations Man Ray, Untitled Portrait of Female, Photography

Man Ray

Untitled Portrait of Female, 1940
10.13 x 10.25 inch
Photography

$3,000

Our recommendations John Kenny, Kashi, Photography

John Kenny

Kashi, 2014
26.4 x 17.7 x 0.8 inch
Photography

$1,327

Our recommendations Annie Leibovitz, Andy Warhol, New York City, Photography

Annie Leibovitz

Andy Warhol, New York City, 1976
20 x 16 inch
Photography

$50,000

Larry Clark, Sans titre 3 (Jonathan), Photography

Larry Clark

Sans titre 3 (Jonathan), 2005
9.1 x 6.7 x 0 inch
Photography

$404

Our recommendations Grzegorz Sikorski, Cinematography inspired sessions #1, Photography

Grzegorz Sikorski

Cinematography inspired sessions #1, 2019
23.6 x 17.7 x 0 inch
Photography

$219

Pierre et Gilles, Le doigt de dieu Etienne Daho, Photography

Pierre et Gilles

Le doigt de dieu Etienne Daho, 2017
9.8 x 7.1 x 0.4 inch
Photography

$5,193

Our recommendations Bruno Timmermans, Aï +, Photography

Bruno Timmermans

Aï +, 2012
59.1 x 59.1 inch
Photography

$5,770

Our recommendations Claude Lévêque, Oriflamme, Photography

Claude Lévêque

Oriflamme, 2019
11.8 x 11.8 x 0.4 inch
Photography

$635

Nobuyoshi Araki, Shojo Monogatari (Girls Story), Photography

Nobuyoshi Araki

Shojo Monogatari (Girls Story), 1988
20.9 x 16.6 inch
Photography

$11,539

Our recommendations Diane Arbus, A Widow in Her Bedroom, 55th St, NYC, Photography

Diane Arbus

A Widow in Her Bedroom, 55th St, NYC, 1963
14 x 11 inch
Photography

$50,000

Our recommendations Maurice Renoma, Acte pulsionnel - M14, Photography

Maurice Renoma

Acte pulsionnel - M14, 1999
27.6 x 39.4 inch
Photography

$4,039

Our recommendations Dasha Pears, Synesthetic Letters - Y, Photography

Dasha Pears

Synesthetic Letters - Y, 2019
19.7 x 19.7 x 0 inch
Photography

$785

Our recommendations Tony Frank, Gainsbourg et sa marionnette#2, Photography

Tony Frank

Gainsbourg et sa marionnette#2, 1973
23.6 x 19.7 x 0.4 inch
Photography

$3,462

Joanna Chudy, Oblivion. Hidden identity., Photography

Joanna Chudy

Oblivion. Hidden identity., 2019
19.7 x 23.6 inch
Photography

$796

Our recommendations Dina Goldstein, Voodoo, Photography

Dina Goldstein

Voodoo, 2014
17.7 x 22.8 x 0.4 inch
Photography

$5,193

Our recommendations Emanuele Ravagnani, Insta #3, Photography

Emanuele Ravagnani

Insta #3, 2020
5.1 x 3.7 inch
Photography

$369

Our recommendations Muriel Deumie, Dans la machine, Photography

Muriel Deumie

Dans la machine, 2021
31.5 x 23.6 x 0.4 inch
Photography

$635

Christopher Makos, Andy Warhol and Keith Haring, Photography

Christopher Makos

Andy Warhol and Keith Haring, 1983
15 x 19 inch
Photography

$4,500

Our recommendations Uwe Ommer, Fashion on the Street, Paris 1963, Photography

Uwe Ommer

Fashion on the Street, Paris 1963, 1963
20 x 16 x 0.1 inch
Photography

$1,800

Our recommendations Samuel Cueto, Kum kum, Photography

Samuel Cueto

Kum kum, 2018
19.7 x 15.7 inch
Photography

$1,039

Our recommendations Fabienne Cresens, La montée des eaux, Photography

Fabienne Cresens

La montée des eaux, 2018
15.7 x 15.7 inch
Photography

$577

Our recommendations Franz West, Platonic Moon, Photography

Franz West

Platonic Moon, 2003
11.8 x 16.8 x 0.4 inch
Photography

$1,731

Our recommendations David Drebin, Photographing herself, Photography

David Drebin

Photographing herself, 2009
19.7 x 25.2 inch
Photography

$5,193

Monika Nowak, Crazy Stacy, Photography

Monika Nowak

Crazy Stacy, 2017
31.5 x 31.5 x 1.2 inch
Photography

$4,154

Our recommendations Pierre Schwartz, Victoire Montmorency, Photography

Pierre Schwartz

Victoire Montmorency, 2010
31.5 x 31.5 inch
Photography

$923

Our recommendations Alain Longeaud, Chien andalou, Photography

Alain Longeaud

Chien andalou, 1975
25.6 x 19.7 inch
Photography

$1,846

Our recommendations Walker Evans, Burroughs Family, Alabama, Photography

Walker Evans

Burroughs Family, Alabama, 1936
11 x 11.25 inch
Photography

$5,000

Mehdi Mirbagheri, Série des Pin Up N°2, Photography

Mehdi Mirbagheri

Série des Pin Up N°2, 2015
31.5 x 31.5 x 0.4 inch
Photography

$2,308

Our recommendations Yagazie Emezi, When Did A Piece Fall Off #4, Photography

Yagazie Emezi

When Did A Piece Fall Off #4, 2016
16.5 x 23.4 inch
Photography

$850

Our recommendations Karine Paoli, Têtes d'Affiches #3, Photography

Karine Paoli

Têtes d'Affiches #3, 2001
48 x 29.9 x 1.2 inch
Photography

$2,308

Our recommendations John Yuyi, I love I 2, Photography

John Yuyi

I love I 2, 2016
19.7 x 15.7 x 0.1 inch
Photography

$1,385

Our recommendations Sarah Maple, Fighting Fire with Fire, Photography

Sarah Maple

Fighting Fire with Fire, 2013
24 x 19.3 inch
Photography

$577

Our recommendations Louis Blanc, TEstacEus, Photography

Louis Blanc

TEstacEus, 2011
39.4 x 39.4 x 0.1 inch
Photography

$2,077 $1,869

Gérard Rancinan, Shanghai Gym, Photography

Gérard Rancinan

Shanghai Gym, 2008
40.6 x 40.6 inch
Photography

$6,924

Our recommendations Ka Xiaoxi, Taylor, Photography

Ka Xiaoxi

Taylor, 2009
15.7 x 23.6 x 0.1 inch
Photography

$1,673

Our recommendations David Djian, Hope, Photography

David Djian

Hope, 2019
31.5 x 21 x 0.1 inch
Photography

$865

Our recommendations Stefanie Schneider, Every single incident weighs tons (The Girl behind the White Picket Fence), Photography

Stefanie Schneider

Every single incident weighs tons (The Girl behind the White Picket Fence), 2013
7.9 x 7.9 x 0 inch
Photography

$635

Our recommendations Albert Watson, Christy Turlington, Photography

Albert Watson

Christy Turlington, 1990
23.75 x 19.75 inch
Photography

$9,000

Thomas Dellert, Foodstore Napoli, Photography

Thomas Dellert

Foodstore Napoli, 2016
23.6 x 15.7 x 0.4 inch
Photography

$462

Ifig, Jungle Fever (Série), Photography

Ifig

Jungle Fever (Série), 2021
16.5 x 11.8 inch
Photography

$577

Our recommendations Angélique, White Spirit I, Photography

Angélique

White Spirit I, 2005
19.7 x 15.7 inch
Photography

$1,731

Our recommendations Malick Sidibé, Vue de dos, Photography

Malick Sidibé

Vue de dos, 2003
9.4 x 7.3 inch
Photography

$808

Robin Austin, Marilyn Monroe, Photography

Robin Austin

Marilyn Monroe, 2016
40.2 x 53.1 x 0.4 inch
Photography

$11,539

Natasha Zupan, Eternal Recurrence #48, Photography

Natasha Zupan

Eternal Recurrence #48, 2015
14 x 11.5 inch
Photography

$1,200

Our recommendations Kirsten Thys van den Audenaerde, Ritual, Photography

Kirsten Thys van den Audenaerde

Ritual, 2020
7.9 x 9.8 x 0 inch
Photography

$438

Our recommendations Plastic Jesus, Flower Thrower, Photography

Plastic Jesus

Flower Thrower, 2020
16 x 20 inch
Photography

$525

Ceridwen Raynor, Captured by the Wind, Photography

Ceridwen Raynor

Captured by the Wind, 2019
29.5 x 29.5 inch
Photography

$963

Our recommendations Rose Hartman, Keith Haring and Andy Warhol, Studio 54, Photography

Rose Hartman

Keith Haring and Andy Warhol, Studio 54, 2021
11 x 14 x 0.1 inch
Photography

$2,500

Katarzyna Widmanska, The Hatter, Photography

Katarzyna Widmanska

The Hatter, 2009
23.6 x 15.7 inch
Photography

$808

Arthur Hent, Self-Portrait 20.62, Photography

Arthur Hent

Self-Portrait 20.62, 2020
15.7 x 11.8 x 1 inch
Photography

$692

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