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NADAR

Sarah Bernhardt

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About the artwork

This photograph taken in 1883 represents the actress Sarah Bernhardt. Nadar chooses to photograph her in her Pierrot outfit that she wears for the pantomime Pierrot the Assassin. The famous French theatre actress was born on 22nd October 1844 in Paris. She is nicknamed the Voice of Gold (Victor Hugo?s expression) or the Divine but also the Scandalous. Considered by many to be one of the greatest French tragic actresses of the 19th century, she is the first actress to have had successful tours in the five continents, Jean Cocteau inventing the expression sacred monster for her. Nadar opts for wide framing. Sarah Bernhardt takes the pose before a neutral background with frontal lighting. The Pierrot character seems forlorn and vulnerable in this set-up. Sarah Bernhardt, hands in her pockets, adopts a nonchalant attitude which suits the androgynous character that she interprets. She ?performs? for photography like she performs on stage.YellowKorner and the Réunion des Musées Nationaux are delighted to publish a photograph by Nadar. Due to its historic nature, this photograph is not numbered or offered as a limited edition. Digital copy, YellowKorner publication 1st July 2010. © RMN / Médiathèque de l'architecture et du Patrimoine / Nadar worksh

The artist

Gaspard-Félix Tournachon, known as Nadar, was born on 6th April 1820 in Paris. He begins his career as an illustrator of caricatures for subversive papers like Charivari. In 1853 he produced Nadar Pantheon, a large lithography representing 300 celebrities. The expectation of the revelation of the inner nature of the person showed through in his photographs. He then made photographical portrait an aesthetic genre.  ... See more See less

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Our key artists

LUDWIG FAVRE

Born in Senlis in 1976, Ludwig Favre now lives and works in Paris. Art history, multimedia and audiovisual studies trained the photographer's eye, sensitive to the reproduction of picturesque landscapes. He has travelled widely, particularly between France and the United States. ...

RUSLAN BOLGOV

Ruslan Bolgov was born in 1974 in Klaipeda, Lithuania, on the shores of the Baltic Sea. His earliest photographs were taken as a teenager, but he didn’t take the experience very far at the time. It wasn’t until the end of his studies in economics and finance that he seriously app...

BERNHARD HARTMANN

Born in Frankfurt in 1955, Bernhard Hartmann began his artistic career at the age of 18 as a press photographer for a German newspaper. Self-taught, he studied art and became a landscape photographer after discovering this medium with the aid of his parents? Polaroid. He creates ...