August Sander

SS Captain, 1937 (1937)

About this artwork

This photograph is one of two portraits of SS officers included in August Sander’s portfolio entitled ‘National Socialists’ within the group ‘Classes and Professions’ in his major project ‘People of the 20th Century’. Sander explicitly separated this portfolio, classified within the photographic project by the subjects’ shared political affiliation, from his portraits of members of the German military. Here the captain is pictured outdoors, before a complex architectural structure in very soft focus, the image cropped close at his shoulders. Wearing his uniform and cap, on which the SS skull and crossbones are displayed underneath the German eagle holding a swastika emblem in its talons, he looks directly into the camera.

see media
  • title: SS Captain, 1937
  • accession number: AL00150
  • artist: August SanderGerman (1874 - 1964)
  • gallery: In Storage
  • object type: Photograph
  • medium: Embossed paper in frame
  • date created: 1937
  • measurements: 25.80 x 17.10 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.