August Sander

Victim of Persecution, c.1938 (about 1938)

About this artwork

August Sander’s monumental photographic project ‘People of the 20th Century’ is one of the most wide-ranging historical documents of modern German society. More than 500 photographs are divided into seven groups, representing the social classes and professions of the time. This is a portrait from the portfolio entitled ‘The Persecuted’, which depicts Jewish people who emigrated or were killed in the Nazi concentration camps, within the sixth group, ‘The City’. The portfolio comprises photographs taken in the late 1920s and the 1930s in which the subjects are often viewed from three-quarters, looking out of the picture into the distance. Sander added it to his project shortly after the war, in testimony to the loss of the German-Jewish middle classes who had substantially shaped social, cultural and economic life in early twentieth-century Germany. Their new absence created a significant void in modern German society.

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  • title: Victim of Persecution, c.1938
  • accession number: AL00111
  • artist: August SanderGerman (1874 - 1964)
  • gallery: In Storage
  • object type: Photograph
  • medium: Embossed paper in frame
  • date created: about 1938
  • measurements: 25.90 x 20.40 cm (paper 43.90 x 34.00 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.