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Annie A Brigman, The Dying Cedar 1909

Annie A Brigman, The Dying Cedar 1909

Regular price $2,200
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Annie A Brigman

The Dying Cedar, 1909

Camera Work XXV

Photogravure, 23.2 x 13.7 cm

Anne Brigman, a member of the Photo­Secession was born in Honolulu, Hawaii, in 1869. By the turn of the century she had settled in the San Francisco area and had won praise and some notoriety for her revolutionary studies of the female nude in natural surroundings. A fervent feminist she separated from her husband to "work out my destiny," and she vigor­ously championed women's rights and equality. Her nude studies used her friends with whom she would climb in the High Sierras. She was an actress as well as photographer. Anne Brigman was an ear­ly member of the Secession but she did not meet Stieglitz until 1909 when she spent eight months in New York.

Though Stieglitz heralded her as a preeminent modernist photographer, Brigman’s painterly photographs soon fell out of favor. For decades after her death in 1950, the art world neglected Brigman—and yet her work is finally now seeing the recognition it deserves. What the beauty and the overt romanticism of the images conceals is their true subversive spirit. “I wanted to go and be free,” Brigman wrote of the Sierras. “I wanted the rough granite flanks of the mountains and the sweet earth.…I wanted to forget everything except that I was going back to heaven, back to heaven in my high boots, and trousers, and mackinaw coat. That was all I wanted.” 

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