About this artwork
Trained as a painter before taking up photography around 1847, Gustave Le Gray was highly regarded for his composition as well as his technique. His seascapes, which were publicly exhibited in London and Paris in 1857 to great acclaim, displayed his technical mastery: he combined two negatives—one exposed for the sea, the other for the sky—to render a scene otherwise unable to be captured photographically. Moreover, Le Gray managed to arrest a breaking wave in this dramatic vertical image, an accomplishment almost unheard of at a time when exposures required several seconds. This photograph comes from an extremely rare album of Le Gray’s seascapes possibly assembled for a Spanish patron.
Currently Off View
- Gustave Le Gray
- The Breaking Wave
- Albumen print, No. 15 from the album "Vistas del Mar"
- Signed recto, lower right, on image, in red pencil [?]: "Gustave Le Gray"; blind stamped recto, on album page, lower center: "PHOTOGRAPHIE / GUSTAVE LE GRAY & C / PARIS"; unmarked verso
- 41.4 × 33.6 cm (image/paper); 64.5 × 50.8 cm (album page)
- Hugh Edwards Fund