Edward and Margrethe are influenced by the circle of Stieglitz but New York is too far away for them. They seek an original conception of photographic art based on the catching of geometry in scenes of daily life. The nude female breast is a favorite theme of Edward.
For some years Edward has replaced silver with palladium which offers a great subtlety in the shades of gray and a lustrous surface. For his best images he is already looking for perfection. The complexity of his work in the dark room requires a painstaking preparation and his early palladium prints are very rare.
At the end of 1920 Edward spent two weeks of passionate love with Betty whom he had met in a nightclub. He is photographing her in several rooms of her house. On October 10 in New York, Christie's sells Betty in Her Attic, a 23 x 19 cm palladium print on 46 x 35 cm paper, titled, signed and dated 1920 on the mount. This photo is estimated $ 600K, lot 323.
This composition between surrealism and constructivism is highly original in the art of Weston. Its main theme is the light transmitted to the white walls through an out of field dormer window. The oblique setting of the attic is reminiscent of The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari, the famous movie released a few months earlier.
The woman in her long dress is standing in the darkness, coiled in an angle of the wall. Her silhouette is underlined by a geometrically illogical shadow that was certainly added in the lab. A foot reaches a spot of light on the ground like an invitation to dance.
Five years later the details of Miriam's nude body will make Edward Weston the best photographer of his time.
SOLD for $ 730K including premium