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Untitled

  • Object:

    Photograph

  • Place of origin:

    USA (photographed)

  • Date:

    1980 (published)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Eggleston, William, born 1937 (photographer)
    Caldecott Chubb (publisher)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Dye transfer print

  • Credit Line:

    Copyright William Eggleston, courtesy of Cheim and Read

  • Museum number:

    E.2779-1990

  • Gallery location:

    Prints & Drawings Study Room, level F, case X, shelf 928, box A

William Eggleston (born 1939) changed the course of colour photography by translating the intense, super-real quality of colour transparencies into the saturated hues of dye transfer prints. Adopting processes previously used in advertising – the dye transfer technique was predominantly commercial at the time – Eggleston set a precedent for colour documentary and art photography that remains influential today. His work pinpoints the moment when colour began to be generally accepted as part of the language of art photography, and his subtle choices of camera positions loosened up photographers’ ideas about viewpoint.

In the early 1970s Eggleston began to photograph the realities of his own landscape in the American South. He finds ‘the uncommonness of the commonplace’ in ordinary scenes and places, as photographer Raymond Moore described it. Inspired by family snapshots, he focuses on the everyday and the overlooked in order to reveal them as remarkable.

Physical description

A colour photograph depicting a statue of a woman leaning on a tomb.

Place of Origin

USA (photographed)

Date

1980 (published)

Artist/maker

Eggleston, William, born 1937 (photographer)
Caldecott Chubb (publisher)

Materials and Techniques

Dye transfer print

Marks and inscriptions

'Eggleston'
Signed in pencil on the back

'This photograph is not released for publication or commercial use of any kind. All rights reserved. Plate 14 of fifteen. Example 26 of thirty'
Inscribed (typed)

'V'
Inscribed (typed)

Dimensions

Height: 44.2 cm, Width: 29.5 cm

Historical context note

William Eggleston's colour photographs pinpoint the moment when colour photography began to be generally accepted as part of the language of art photography. Adopting processes previously used to manipulate advertising images, Eggleston set the precedent for colour documentary and art photography of the last twenty years. Eggleston finds in places such as shopping centres and ordinary interiors, "the uncommonness of the commonplace", as photographer Raymond Moore described it. Inspired by the beauty of family snapshots, Eggleston looks at the everyday and the overlooked in order to reveal them as remarkable.

Descriptive line

Photograph, 'Untitled' from the series Troubled Waters, by William Eggleston, published by Caldecott Chubb, dye transfer print, USA, 1980

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

Victoria and Albert Museum Department of Prints, Drawings and Paintings Accession Register for 1990
Haworth-Booth, Mark. William Eggleston : colour photographs from the American South. London: Victoria and Albert Museum, 1983.

Materials

Paper

Techniques

Dye transfer

Subjects depicted

Grave; Tomb; Cemetery; Statue; Grief

Categories

Photographs; Sculpture

Collection

Prints, Drawings & Paintings Collection

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