|An albumen print mounted on a cut-down section of album page, this is not actually a cabinet card per se but is almost exactly the same size as one. The photograph shows the head and shoulders of a beautiful model, and would have been one of a very large series of photographs of hands, limbs, heads and bodies arranged in a wide variety of poses, marketed as a tool to aid artists engaged on large works depicting scenes from Classical antiquity, particularly ones featuring crowd scenes.
The photographer is probably Louis Jean Baptiste Igout, known for his academic studies, particularly those of nudes.
’Located at 30 boulevard d’Enfer in Paris in the 1870s, Igout was the photographer of many 19th century academic nudes, usually published in multiple image format by the editeur Calavas. Though classical in composition, a fine use of lighting, props and posing makes these among the most attractive of the late 19th century nude studies. Igout lodge numbered groups of nude studies (E numbers-female and F numbers- male) with the Dépot Légal in 1876 and 1880. Some of these prints bear stamps both a Calavas stamp as editor and Louis Igout’s stamp as photographer.’ [Ken Jacobson, Étude d’après nature, 1996.]
condition: The print has good tonal range but shows a faint, vertical crease in a raking light, sustained
prior to mounting, and there are a few wrinkles near its lower edge, probably caused by air bubbles at
the time of mounting. The reverse of the mount shows some stains.
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