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Midnight Lake George

A work made of gum bichromate and cyanotype over platinum print.
© 2018 The Estate of Edward Steichen/Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

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  • A work made of gum bichromate and cyanotype over platinum print.




Edward Steichen
American, born Luxembourg, 1879–1973

About this artwork

Edward Steichen, a painter as well as a photographer, was an early adherent of Pictorialism, which promoted photography as a fine art and emphasized handcraft in printing. A protégé of the photographer Alfred Stieglitz, he designed the cover and layout of Stieglitz’s journal Camera Work, a publication championing the medium’s artistic potential. Steichen excelled at the gum bichromate process, which allowed artists to layer different colors and manipulate the emulsion, while still wet, in a painterly fashion; here, he was able to enhance highlights by removing pigment with a brush. As he wrote in the first issue of Camera Work, “every photograph is a fake from start to finish, a purely impersonal, unmanipulated photograph being practically impossible.”

For more on Edward Steichen’s work in the Art Institute’s collection visit the website: Edward Steichen’s World War I Years.

For more on the Alfred Stieglitz collection at the Art Institute, along with in-depth object information, please visit the website: The Alfred Stieglitz Collection.


Currently Off View


Photography and Media


Edward Steichen


Midnight Lake George


United States (Artist's nationality:)

Date  Dates are not always precisely known, but the Art Institute strives to present this information as consistently and legibly as possible. Dates may be represented as a range that spans decades, centuries, dynasties, or periods and may include qualifiers such as c. (circa) or BCE.

Made 1904


Gum bichromate and cyanotype over platinum print


Signed and inscribed recto, on image, lower left, in green pencil [?]: "STEICHEN / MDCCCCIV"; inscribed verso, on second mount, upper left, in graphite: "Midnight Lake George / by / Steichen"


Image/paper/first mount/second mount: 39.2 × 50.6 cm (15 7/16 × 19 15/16 in.)

Credit Line

Alfred Stieglitz Collection

Reference Number



© 2018 The Estate of Edward Steichen/Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Extended information about this artwork

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