August Sander

Middle-class Child, c.1925 (about 1925)

About this artwork

This photograph belongs to the portfolio entitled ‘Mother and Child’ within the larger group ‘The Woman’ in August Sander’s documentary project ‘People of the 20th Century’. Conceived as a typology of the German people during the 1920s, the project comprises more than 500 photographs divided into seven groups of over 45 portfolios. This image is one of several in the project that show a small child pictured alone. Here, the child sits astride a toy horse in a garden, accompanied by a marching doll in a cap and boots that provides an artificial male surrogate for the child’s absent mother. A well-tended flowerbed demarcates the border with the neighbour’s garden to the right, and a gate and a row house are visible in the softly focused background.

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  • title: Middle-class Child, c.1925
  • accession number: AL00144
  • artist: August SanderGerman (1874 - 1964)
  • gallery: In Storage
  • object type: Photograph
  • medium: Embossed paper in frame
  • date created: about 1925
  • measurements: 25.80 x 18.80 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.