Man Ray - Important Photographs from the Collection of Dr. Anthony Terrana New York Monday, April 1, 2013 | Phillips

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  • Provenance

    Christie's New York, 20 April 1994, lot 52
    Houk Friedman Gallery, New York

  • Catalogue Essay

    When Man Ray moved to Paris in 1921, he quickly turned to photography in order to support himself. During the next two decades he photographed innumerable artists and intellectuals, from James Joyce and Virginia Woolf to André Breton and Marcel Duchamp. Among these was Max Ernst, a friend and occasional artistic collaborator. The original Man Ray glass-plate negative of the present lot was intentionally broken by Max Ernst, who then stuck together the glass splinters with tape. In a further act of appropriation, Ernst wrote on the tape with India ink and exposed the plate so that the light-colored tape came out black and the writing white. The new plate, now a self-portrait photomontage of sorts, was used by Max Ernst as the invitation to his 1935 Paris exhibition, Exposition Max Ernst, dernières oeuvres. The present lot shows Man Ray’s re-appropriation of Ernst’s experiment. Between the Dadaist negation of the artist and the Surrealist decentering of identity, Man Ray’s portrait is a commentary on photography’s possibilities beyond the mere recording of reality.



Max Ernst

Gelatin silver print.
9 x 6 7/8 in. (22.9 x 17.5 cm)
'31 bis, Rue Campagne Première' credit stamp on the verso.

$50,000 - 70,000 

Sold for $122,500

Contact Specialist
Vanessa Kramer Hallett
Worldwide Head of Photographs
[email protected]
+ 1 212 940 1245

Important Photographs from the Collection of Dr. Anthony Terrana

2 & 3 April 2013
New York