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Eugène Atget (1857 - 1927)

Lifespan: 1857 - 1927

Related: photography - daguerreotype - naturalism - French art - Paris - street photography - art photography

Rue de la Colonie (1900) - Eugène Atget
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Eugène Atget (1857 - 1927) was a French photographer noted for his naturalistic photographs of and in the city of Paris.

Atget's photographs attracted the attention of well-known painters such as Man Ray, Andre Derain, Henri Matisse, and Picasso in the 1920's. Fellow photographer Berenice Abbott is given much credit for the recognition which Atget's photographs received after his death in 1927. One year before his death, Abbott, then an assistant to Man Ray, met with Atget and conserved many of his negatives. When Atget passed away, Abbott raised enough money to acquire 1,500 of his negatives and 8,000 prints. She spent the next forty years promoting his work in America, elevating it to be recognized as art, above its original reputation as simply photographic documents. In 1968, Eugene Atget's work was collected by the Museum of Modern Art in New York City. Berenice Abbott has commented regarding Atget: "He was an urbanist historian, a Balzac of the camera, from whose work we can weave a large tapestry of French civilization."--http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eug%C3%A8ne_Atget [Jan 2006]

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