Australian Art

EUGÈNE ATGET: OLD PARIS



Lose yourself in the beauty of Old Paris with over 200 rare and original prints from the founder of documentary photography.


In a period of rapid modernisation, Atget captured images of Old Paris – the buildings, shops, gardens and streets – which revealed a city remote from the clichés of the Belle Époque. Rarely permitted to travel, see the work of this influential photographer for the first time in Australia.
His bellows camera, glass plates and printing technique may link him to earlier 19th-century photography, but the vision of Eugène Atget (1857–1927) was an astonishingly modern one.

The best of Atget’s work is revealed through his images of the streets of Old Paris. In a time of rapid transformation, Atget captured the buildings, gardens, old shops and streets that had not been touched by Baron Haussmann’s 19th-century modernisation program. We are shown a city remote from the clichés of the Belle Époque, a genuine glimpse into the past of this iconic metropolis.

Considered the founder of documentary photography, Atget and his enigmatic images inspired numerous artists including Brassaï, the Surrealists, Walker Evans and Berenice Abbott, as well as Man Ray, who collected some of the photographs included in the exhibition.

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