Sunday, April 20, 2014

French Nudes ~ Cabinet Cards circa 1870s~1890s


In the early years of the commercialization of the nude in photography one of the most popular formats was a roughly 3.75" x 5.5" photograph mounted to a "cabinet card". The initial concept of the cabinet card was to mount a family photograph or portrait of a loved one to thick card stock so it could be displayed in a "cabinet" next to other cherished family possessions. As a convenient way of preserving, and in a sense, market illicit nudes to the public, the cabinet card mount (and other sizes of cards for smaller and larger format photographs) became conventional. Here from a collection purchased in Paris are some fine examples, a few with subtle hand-tinting, from the 1870s to the 1890s.

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