Skip to Content

Open today 10–11 a.m. members | 11 a.m.–6 p.m. public. Learn more.

Fête du Trône

black and white photo of a window display of chair and shoes for giant and midget.

Image actions

  • black and white photo of a window display of chair and shoes for giant and midget.




Jean-Eugène-Auguste Atget
French, 1857–1927

About this artwork

For almost three decades, Eugène Atget, an actor turned documentary photographer, organized views of Paris into an elaborately ordered archive that mapped the city in its details and registered a broad complaint against its transformation from a world of artisans and individuals into a capital of spectacle. Usually early in the morning, Atget hauled a large view camera, a wood tripod, and heavy glass plates around the city to do his work. In Fête du trône, the photographer captured a curious window display featuring articles associated with a giant and a midget, a sort of ready-made Surrealism. In 1925, the year this photograph was taken, Atget was discovered by the expatriate American artist and photographer Man Ray, who was part of the Surrealist circle of poets and artists in Paris. With Man Ray’s support, Atget’s work began to be published and recognized as more than just a visual history of Paris. Upon Atget’s death, Man Ray’s assistant, the photographer Berenice Abbott, acquired the more than eight thousand prints found in his studio and devoted decades to promoting his vast and remarkable oeuvre. The funds for Abbott’s purchase were supplied by Julien Levy, a prominent dealer of photography and Surrealism, the core of whose photographic collection is held at the Art Institute.


Currently Off View


Photography and Media


Jean-Eugène-Auguste Atget


Fête du Trône




Made 1925


Gelatin silver printing out paper print


Printed recto, lower left, in black, backwards: "68"; verso unchecked


18 × 22.6 cm (image/paper)

Credit Line

Julien Levy Collection, Special Photography Acquisition Fund

Reference Number


Extended information about this artwork

Object information is a work in progress and may be updated as new research findings emerge. To help improve this record, please email . Information about image downloads and licensing is available here.


Sign up for our enewsletter to receive updates.

Learn more

Image actions