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
- 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"
- 39.2 × 50.6 cm (image/paper/first mount/second mount)
- Alfred Stieglitz Collection
- © 2018 The Estate of Edward Steichen/Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York