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Imogen Cunningham "Magnolia Blossom" 1925
[Celebrating The Negative]
1925 (original image) 2008 (publication)
Gelatin silver print
Hands: Rondal Partridge, 8.17.93
Imogen Cunningham educated herself about plants and flowers after she began to photograph cacti and other succulents in her backyard in Oakland, California.
"Her Magnolia Blossom is great, but she made a hundred magnolias literally one hundred negatives of magnolias that she threw away," says her son Rondal Partridge. "When we were kids we used to throw her rejected negatives into the fireplace the nitrate would explode hundreds, thousands. God, how I wish we hadn't."
"For a long time I did not think my mother was a very good photographer. She was just a photographer. She did portraits and kids. She assumed her job was every day to make a photograph, but she photographed for the pure joy. She considered it not her work it was her occupation to make people see and be happy."
This photograph is included in the portfolio Celebrating the Negative photographs by published by John Loengard, Etherton Gallery (2008), pl. 4
All photographs copyright ® John Loengard. Gelatin silver prints printed by Chuck Kelton, Kelton Labs, New York City, under the direct supervision of John Loengard. Printed on Ilford Multigrade Warm Glossy paper. Design and portfolio box construction by Jace Graf, Cloverleaf Studio, Austin, Texas.
Celebrating The Negative/Photographs by John Loengard was published by Etherton Gallery, Tucson, Arizona, in March, 2008, in an edition of eighteen portfolios, including fifteen numbered copies and three artist's proofs.