August Sander

Composer [Richard Strauss], 1925 (1925)

About this artwork

This is a portrait of Richard Strauss (1864–1949), the well-known German composer of the late Romantic and early modern eras. It belongs to the portfolio ‘The Composer’, from the fifth group entitled ‘The Artists’ within August Sander’s monumental photographic project ‘People of the 20th Century’, in which he aspired to document the social types and professional classes of his time. Sander photographed Strauss with a typically uncompromisingly realistic eye, placing him before a plain background and lighting him clearly. The composer’s suit is modest and simple. At eye-level with the viewer, he looks directly and soberly into the camera. The photograph leaves little room for perceptions of the figure of the modern artist as an eccentric bohemian.

see media
  • title: Composer [Richard Strauss], 1925
  • accession number: AL00092
  • artist: August SanderGerman (1874 - 1964)
  • gallery: In Storage
  • object type: Photograph
  • medium: Embossed paper in frame
  • date created: 1925
  • measurements: 26.00 x 19.00 cm (paper 44.00 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.