WAGNER, Richard [1813-1883]: Portrait photograph from the studio of Hermann Steinberg. Signed on the reverse with his own hand and the addition "Mr. Fischer". [St. Petersburg, März 1863]. 10 x 5.8 cm. Somewhat browned. Slight crease, lower left.

Artikelnummer: 28184
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  • One of his earliest original photographs! In the spring of 1863, Wagner made a grand tour of Russia at the invitation of the Philharmonic Society in St. Petersburg. During his stay there, a series of 6 photographs was produced in Hermann Steinberg's studio between March 2 and March 9, 1863. Wagner personally passed the photos on to friends and acquaintances and sometimes added his name to the back. - The present photo was given to the concertmaster [Karl] Fischer. On the reverse, in someone else's hand: "This picture was given by R. Wagner to Mr. Karl Fischer, who functioned as concertmaster under his direction in 1863. Cannstatt 1901". - Wagner increasingly turned to the new medium of photography in the 1850s. However, initial attempts at taking portraits failed due to the inadequate technical possibilities, so that the first surviving photographs date from 1860. During his concert tour in Russia in 1863, the first series of photographs were taken, which show Wagner "still largely as a private person, rather introverted, and also still with an unmistakable uncertainty about the new medium" (Weber. Das Bild Richard Wagners. vol. 1, p. 95). - Cf. Geck, M.: "Die Bildnisse Richard Wagners" No. 12A-E our photograph is not known; Braam, G.: R.W. in der zeitgenössischen Fotografie, p. 60, fig. 62 catalog number 12; Wagner. Sämtl. Briefe 15, p. 498 (note). Seltene frühe Original-Fotografie.
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