August Sander

Brother and Sister, c.1922 (about 1922)

About this artwork

August Sander conceived his project ‘People of the 20th Century’ in the mid-1920s, after a successful early career as a portrait photographer based first in his studios in Linz and Cologne, and later working as a commercial travelling photographer. The project’s monumental scale – more than five hundred images divided into seven groups and over forty-five portfolios – prevented its finalisation. This picture may have been intended for inclusion in the group ‘The Woman’ (in which there are several portraits of children), and is related through its subject matter to such images as ‘Middle-Class Child’ (about 1925). The siblings portrayed here are well-dressed and shown in the road leading to a large house, perhaps their own. Neither makes eye contact with the photographer: leaning protectively over her brother, the girl appears preoccupied with her thoughts, while the boy’s attention seems to have been caught by something to the right of the camera at which he is staring intently.

see media
  • title: Brother and Sister, c.1922
  • accession number: AL00164
  • artist: August SanderGerman (1874 - 1964)
  • gallery: In Storage
  • object type: Photograph
  • medium: Embossed paper in frame
  • date created: about 1922
  • measurements: 25.90 x 19.00 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.