Last week I went to the library and read something about Man Ray. This portrait of  Meret Oppenheim solarized gelatin-silver print in 1933 caught my attention right away.


His real name was Emmanuel Radnitzky. For Man Ray (1890-1976) , photography often operated in the gap between art and life. It was a means of documenting sculptures that never had an independent life outside the photograph, and it was a means of capturing the activities of his avant-garde friends.

While Man Ray worked with a wide variety of mediums, he is most well-known for his surrealist photography and photograms (which he called rayographs). Photograms are photographic images made without a camera. You can create a photogram yourself by setting yourself up in a darkroom, placing objects on top of photo paper, and then exposing both the paper and the objects to light. Once you develop the photo paper, you’ll see that there are white shapes where the objects sat. Photograms are an easy way to get acquainted with surreal and abstract “photography” in the darkroom.


Noire et Blanche


Above was the autographed print of Man Ray’s Glass Tears, which sold for $193,895 at Christie’s New York on May 7, 1993.

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