Imogen Cunningham

Imogen Cunningham
born Portland, OR 1883-died San Francisco, CA 1976
Active in
  • Seattle, Washington
  • Oakland, California
U.S. States
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Artist Biography

Cunningham posed for this portrait at the age of thirty-two, with her new husband, Roi Partridge, tripping the camera's shutter. In this darkly toned platinum print, she has the appearance of a character from an ancient Celtic myth, but, in fact, Cunningham had less fanciful concerns as a photographer. Using a photographic style considered artistic in the early years of the twentieth century, she presented a portrait of the artist, determined in demeanor and confident of her talent. By the time of World War I, Pictorialism had run its course. Cunningham went on to become a member of the California-based group f/64, known for its dedication to the sharp-focus rendition of simple subjects.

Merry A. Foresta American Photographs: The First Century (Washington, D.C.: National Museum of American Art with the Smithsonian Institution Press, 1996)