Image of Gallery in South Kensington
On display at V&A South Kensington
Request to view at the Prints & Drawings Study Room, room 512M

Self-Portrait : Constructor

Photograph
1924 (made)
Artist/Maker
Place Of Origin

Monochrome photograph (silver gelatin print) of a collage of lithographic and drawn elements added to a photographic image. The photographic image was itself produced by superimposing two separate photographs: The Architects Equipment (showing El Lissitzky's hand holding a compass against graph paper with an arching line) and his Self Portrait, both taken in 1924 while Lissitzky was recovering from tuberculosis in a Swiss sanatorium. The resulting image fuses the artist's head, hand and tools. Large printed letters 'XYZ' appear in the top left hand portion of the image.


object details
Category
Object Type
Materials and Techniques
Collage of lithographic and drawn elements added to a photographic image
Brief Description
Photograph : Self-Portrait: Constructor, Gelatin silver print, El Lissitzky, 1924
Physical Description
Monochrome photograph (silver gelatin print) of a collage of lithographic and drawn elements added to a photographic image. The photographic image was itself produced by superimposing two separate photographs: The Architects Equipment (showing El Lissitzky's hand holding a compass against graph paper with an arching line) and his Self Portrait, both taken in 1924 while Lissitzky was recovering from tuberculosis in a Swiss sanatorium. The resulting image fuses the artist's head, hand and tools. Large printed letters 'XYZ' appear in the top left hand portion of the image.
Dimensions
  • Height: 106mm
  • Width: 116mm
  • Frame height: 400mm
  • Frame width: 400mm
  • Frame depth: 30mm
Style
Gallery Label
Gallery 100, ‘History of photography’, 2011-2012, label text : El Lissitzky (1890-1941) ‘Self-portrait: Constructor’ 1924 Lissitzky presents himself as a designer with the attributes of his profession: graph paper; a hand holding a pair of compasses; and typographical elements of his own letterhead. The montage was made by contact printing the different negative elements one after the other onto the same positive printing-out paper. Gelatin silver print Museum no. Ph.142-1985 (07 03 2014)
Object history
Provenance: Mikhail Larionov ollection.
Subjects depicted
Bibliographic References
  • Wilk, Christopher (ed.) Modernism : designing a new world 1914-1939. London: V&A Publications, 2006 Number: 1851774777 (pbk.)
  • Ute Eskilden et al. De lo humano: fotografía internacional, 1900-1950 Málago: Museo Picasso Málaga, 2008. 256 p. ISBN: 9788493490140 / 8493490148 / 9788475068190.
Collection
Accession Number
PH.142-1985

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record createdJune 27, 2007
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