Roger Fenton: 12 works

A slideshow of artworks auto-selected from multiple collections

By Google Arts & Culture

South Front of the Kremlin from the Old Bridge (September 1852) by Roger FentonThe J. Paul Getty Museum

'To achieve this view, Roger Fenton set up his camera on a bridge across from the Moscow River.'

L'Entente cordiale (1855) by Roger FentonMusée d’Orsay, Paris

'In an attempt to change English public opinion, which was then hostile to the war, Queen Victoria asked Roger Fenton, a friend of the royal family, to make a photographic account of the conflict. Financed by the publisher Thomas Agnew and assisted by Marcus Sparling, Fenton disembarked in the port of Balaclava, and then went on to Sebastopol in March 1855.'

Valley of the Shadow of Death (April 23, 1855) by Roger FentonThe J. Paul Getty Museum

'--Roger Fenton Fenton's most famous photograph is also one of the most well-known images of war.'

Major Gen.l Sir George Buller, K.C.B. (1855, printed 1856) by Roger FentonGeorge Eastman Museum

'Originally a barrister, Roger Fenton studied art with Gustave LeGray at the studio of Paul Delaroche in Paris. He exhibited at the Royal Academy, 1849-1851.'

On the Llugwy, near Bettws-y-Coed (1857) by Roger FentonThe J. Paul Getty Museum

'Fenton's carefully composed view evokes the Arcadian visions of seventeenth-century landscape painters like Claude Lorrain and Nicolas Poussin.'

Moel Seabid, from the Lledr Valley (1857) by Roger FentonThe J. Paul Getty Museum

'One reviewer exulted that Fenton "seems to be to photography what Turner was to painting--our greatest landscape photographer."'

Egyptian Dancing Girl (1858) by Roger FentonThe J. Paul Getty Museum

'Although costumed as an Egyptian dancer, this woman is actually an English model posing in Roger Fenton's London studio.'

Contemplative Odalisque (1858) by Roger FentonThe J. Paul Getty Museum

'Three years after traveling in the Crimea, Roger Fenton made a series of Orientalist photographs in his London studio using props gathered during his travels and non-Eastern models.'

[Dinornis Elephantopus] (1854–1858) by Roger FentonThe J. Paul Getty Museum

'Against an interior brick wall, he hung white sheets to form a backdrop so that he could more clearly emphasize the subject's physical structure.'

Pasha and Bayadère (1858) by Roger FentonThe J. Paul Getty Museum

'No, in actuality, this photograph was staged in Fenton's studio in London with hired models, and the woman's arms are held aloft by strings to keep them perfectly still.'

Still Life with Fruit and Decanter (1860)The J. Paul Getty Museum

'Roger Fenton began to make still lifes of fruits and flowers toward the end of his brief photographic career. Unlike his earlier, more documentary work, the still lifes were Fenton's conscious effort to align the medium of photography with the more traditional art form of painting.'

Lichfield Cathedral, Central Doorway, West Porch (1858 - printed 1863-1865) by Roger FentonThe Museum of Fine Arts, Houston

'In the course of a single decade, from 1852 to 1862, Roger Fenton excelled in every genre of photography: majestic architectural views of England's ruined abbeys and stately homes, Romantic depictions of the countryside, moving reportage of the Crimean War, intimate portraits of Queen Victoria and her family, Orientalist tableaux vivants, and astonishingly lush still lifes. As a photographer of architecture, he was without parallel among his countrymen.'

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