The Lonely Metropolitan thumbnail 1
The Lonely Metropolitan thumbnail 2
Not currently on display at the V&A

The Lonely Metropolitan

Photograph
1932 (made)
Artist/Maker
Place Of Origin

Herbert Bayer was one of the leading figures in the Bauhaus movement in Germany and throughout his career was a highly influential graphic designer and artist. Bayer produced some straight photographs, highlighting the abstract structures and sculptural qualities of things, but was never interested in the technical side of photography and so his exploration of straight photography was limited. He left the Bauhaus in 1928 and established himself as a leading designer. It was at this stage that he took and interest in photomontage. He was partly responsible for establishing photomontage as a key commercial visual style in the 1930s.


object details
Categories
Object Type
Materials and Techniques
printer's ink, paper, photomontage, photography
Brief Description
20thC; Bayer Herbert, The Lonely Metropolitan, 1932
Physical Description
Photomontage
Dimensions
  • Sheet height: 398mm
  • Sheet width: 298mm
  • Print height: 392mm
  • Print width: 293mm
Styles
Marks and Inscriptions
Herb Bayer [signature] 32 (Signed bottom right of photograph)
Credit line
Acquired from Marlborough Fine Art Ltd., London in 1968.
Historical context
Herbert Bayer was one of the leading figures in the Bauhaus movement in Germany and throughout his career was a highly influential graphic designer and artist. Bayer began to experiment with photography while he was teaching advertising, typography and layout at the Bauhaus school in Dessau. He produced some straight photographs, highlighting the abstract structures and sculptural qualities of things, but was never interested in the technical side of photography and so his exploration of straight photography was limited. He left the Bauhaus in 1928 and established himself as a leading designer. It was at this stage that he took and interest in photomontage. He used the technique for his own artistic work but also in advertising work, where he was partly responsible for establishing photomontage as a key commercial visual style in the 1930s. His main body of photographic work was produced in the late 1920s and the 1930s, after which he continued to develop other areas of visual design.
Production
Attribution note: ‘Montage…is the combination of diverse photographic images to produce a new work. The combination is often achieved by re-photographing the mounted elements or by multiple darkroom exposures. In the finished work the actual physical edges become inconspicuous. The artistic result often tends towards the surreal rather than the abstract.’



Gordon Baldwin, Looking at Photographs, J. Paul Getty Museum, 1991
Subjects depicted
Summary
Herbert Bayer was one of the leading figures in the Bauhaus movement in Germany and throughout his career was a highly influential graphic designer and artist. Bayer produced some straight photographs, highlighting the abstract structures and sculptural qualities of things, but was never interested in the technical side of photography and so his exploration of straight photography was limited. He left the Bauhaus in 1928 and established himself as a leading designer. It was at this stage that he took and interest in photomontage. He was partly responsible for establishing photomontage as a key commercial visual style in the 1930s.
Bibliographic References
  • Wood, Ghislaine, ed. Surreal Things. Surrealism and Design London : V&A Publications, 2007. 362 p. : col. Ill. ISBN: 978 1 85177 500 2 (HBK) 978 1 85177 501 9 (PBK)
  • Taken from Departmental Circulation Register 1968
Collection
Accession Number
CIRC.738-1968

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record createdOctober 11, 2006
Record URL