August Sander

Village Pastor and Family, 1920-5 (1920 - 1925)

About this artwork

This photograph is classified in the portfolio entitled ‘The Family’, within the group ‘The Woman’, in August Sander’s photographic opus ‘People of the 20th Century’. Its placement within this context is of particular note because Sander also created a portfolio entitled ‘The Clergyman’, within the group ‘Classes and Professions’, which features the familial life of protestant clergy. A formal studio portrait, the photograph exploits its dark background to frame and highlight this family of five. The composition is organised around the seated adults with their children arranged between them: the two older children stand on either side of their mother, while the youngest sits in his father’s lap. From the tips of their shined shoes to their well-pressed clothing, the family emanates a sense of order and calm as they look towards the photographer that is only slightly undermined by the curious expression of the little girl in the centre of the image.

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  • title: Village Pastor and Family, 1920-5
  • accession number: AL00050
  • artist: August SanderGerman (1874 - 1964)
  • gallery: In Storage
  • object type: Photograph
  • medium: Embossed paper in frame
  • date created: 1920 - 1925
  • measurements: 25.10 x 22.40 cm (paper 43.90 x 33.90 cm; mount: 46.00 x 36.00 cm) (framed: 48.20 x 38.20 x 3.20 cm)
  • credit line: ARTIST ROOMS National Galleries of Scotland and Tate. Lent by Anthony d'Offay 2010
  • copyright: © Die Photographische Sammlung/SK Stiftung Kultur - August Sander Archiv, Köln/VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn and DACS, London 2016.
This artwork is part of Artist Rooms

August Sander

August Sander

Considered one of the finest photographers of the twentieth century, Sander's bold style of portrait photography, as well as his typological approach, has had an enormous influence on modern photography. During his apprenticeship in several German studios and his time in his own studio in Austria, he developed his individual style. Then in 1910 Sander moved to Cologne and produced his first large group of photographs, which he later included in his concept "People of the 20th Century". This was created in the mid-1920s and compiled up until the 1950s. He photographed groups of people in his native Germany, classifying them according to their occupations and positions in society.