Gustave Le Gray and his Circle

11 - 14 October 2012

A special presentation for Frieze Masters 2012 by James Hyman, F11.

James Hyman will present a special exhibition that coincides with the Petit Palais, Paris' coincidental show on the subject.

Gustave le Gray was one of the most technically accomplished of all early photographers, even writing treatises on how best to perfect the earliest chemical processes. But as this exhibition demonstrates, and Le Gray himself emphasised, photography was not just about scientific advance but also the creation of a new aesthetic:
is my deepest wish that photography, instead of falling within the domain of industry, of commerce, will be included among the arts. That is its sole, true place, and it is in that direction that I shall always endeavour to guide it. It is up to the men devoted to its advancement to set this idea firmly in their minds."

Gustave le Gray was arguably the greatest French photographer of the 19th Century, but was also one of its most significant teachers. Famous for his early salt prints made as part of the Mission Heliographique's project to document the buildings of France, he was also a magnificent landscape photographer, famed above all for his sea-scapes, as well as prized for his landscapes of Paris and of Egypt. Many of the greatest photographers of the day learnt their craft at his atelier.

This exhibition will present not only masterworks by Gustave le Gray but also significant examples from the oeuvres of Edouard-Denis Baldus, Hippolyte Bayard, J. B. Greene and Charles Negre.