Photographers are seeking an emotional expression in the most extreme and difficult lights. They endeavor to try any chemical formula that could improve the quality of the image.
Some artists have their muse who becomes the favorite theme of their art, like Georgia O'Keeffe with Stieglitz. Paul Strand is working with Rebecca Salsbury from 1920. He is photographing her face close-up in the dark with reflections of light in the white of her eyes that invite for the feat of the future positive print. He works by contact with the best platinum or palladium papers and experiments the effect of thermal treatment on the gloss of the picture.
On April 1 in New York, Sotheby's sells a diagonal portrait of Rebecca's face by Paul, dated 1921 from a negative of the same year, one year before their marriage. This platinum print 20 x 25 cm is estimated $ 300K, lot 38.
In the same technique and same format, the face of Rebecca shot from front side with a straight gaze in 1923 was sold for $ 650K including premium by Sotheby's on April 7, 2008 in the auction of the Quillan collection.