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Cover: Die Kunst in der Photographie (1897-1903)
[Die Kunst in der Photographie]
Photograph courtesy PhotoSeed.com
This is the 4th year (1900), 2nd issue supplement art folio.
Woodblock artwork and Jugendstil typography by the artist Hermann Hirzel (1864-1939).
The cover and inside artwork was executed in 1896
Six thin cardstock individual art folios were issued for each year from 1897-1903.
Plain green cardstock folios with plain black typography issued beginning in 1904; plain red cardstock folios with plain black typography were issued for the years 1906-1907. Gray cardstock folios with plain white typography issued for the the final 8 folios published in 1908. I have not determined the color of the 1905 folios. (David Spencer, Dec 2006)
Size of folios are 36cm x 26cm.
Publisher: Martin Oldenbourg (Berlin) (1900)
Translation of the original German text.
The development of amateur photography has now arrived at a turning point. Among the many amateurs a small group has formed which sees more in photography rather than a game or a way to spend time.
A new era for amateur photography has dawned - the artistic, the personal photography.
How this developed, how it had to culminate, this is reflected by the outstanding essays by Alfred Buschbeck, a Horsley Hinton, a Marcel Vanderkindere, and the editor has attempted to achieve in this issue to demonstrate the problems of artistic photography, the results which have been documented, and to show the reproductions.
First and foremost we are attempting to showcase the master works of the Vienna Camera-Club, the Paris Photo-Club and the Linked Ring in England; alongside we are showing the Association belge de Photographie in Brussels and also the Berliner Vereine which are included for the first time in the society of art photographers. They have no reason to withhold their outstanding works, but they lack a meeting location where they can gather to work together artistically, which other organizations have available in excellent form.
Many important artists of these organizations are not included which we were unable to reproduce for this issue, since we can only publish a limited number of art pages in each issue, but we do not want to deny them the well-earned place, since it will be our next commitment to repeat and continue the stroll through cultural lands which appreciate artistic photography - we are thinking first of America, Holland, Italy and Russia - at the same time we also want to deeply honor the cultural life in our German clubs, and at this first time Hamburg, where the Society for the Development of Amateur-Photography has been instrumental in promoting artistic photography in Germany, therefore we will devote one of the first issues of the second year to the artistic efforts of this society.
It is our goal to be constantly looking with open eyes inside and outside Germany and plan to document the latest developments in this art form, so it can remain a true mirror image of artistic photography.
With my thanks to all devoted and unselfish assistants which have helped us to give this issue its very own character, to which we are committed since it is our vision to place artistic photography in its very own honorable place next to all other art forms.
In order to achieve this vision, we need the cooperation of other art connoisseurs. -
It is a very open and for a long time debated question if photography can even be regarded as art, a question which brings contradictory opinions by those who are closest to art - the artists themselves. While some of them do not relate photography with 'art' at all, others recognize the loving closeness of the artistic emotions of amateur photography, and even in the contradiction of the opinions lays the principal meaning of this question. Although there might be limits to artistic photography which cannot be surpassed, at least the successful efforts should be recognized which creates artistic achievements and at the same time elevates photography to a level where it should be - an art form.
I wanted to add a few words to this young undertaking.
The development of artistic photography has entered a stage which we can describe in the history of photography as a turning point. Among the large number of amateurs a small community has formed which perceives more in amateur photography than a game, a way to spend time, and which desires to place photography art on the same level with other art forms.
It has been debated for many years if photography can even be regarded as art, a question which even leads artists to voice contradicting opinions, although they are the closest to all art forms. While some artists do not want to equate photography to 'art' at all, others recognize the artistic vein of many amateur photographers; in this contradiction rest the many opinions on this question.
It is not our intent to determine to solve this issue. A picture should speak to the observer; it should attempt to reflect the emotions of the amateur photographer by careful reproduction; and even if many a reproduction is unable to reflect the uniqueness of the original object, it should be attempted to come as close to the original as possible.
I dedicate this first issue to the artistic endeavors to the Camera-Club of Vienna; I therefore fulfill my noble obligation to applaud the high achievements without any envy which this club as the first in Germany and Austria has earned with its artistic amateur photography, and even if I am permitted to show just a few masters' high achievements of this club in this first issue, so I do hope that a subsequent issue will showcase pictures of other outstanding members of this club.
At this time I do want to recognize these gentlemen which have supervised the reproductions personally and would like to express my deep gratitude to them.
So I am offering this first issue to the public. Hopefully it will be received warmly by all those artistic circles that show sincere interest in photography.
[With many thanks to Helga Lunsford & Wilhelm Bierling for providing the English translation from the original German.]