Dreams of Desire 52 (Raoul Ubac)

Raoul Ubac-Sleeping Nude 1939
The German born photographer and artist Raoul Ubac settled in Paris in the early 1930’s and under the influence of Man Ray promptly embraced Surrealism and its techniques, particularly solarisation and collage. During the course of the 1930’s Ubac explored the boundaries of experimental photography with his bold and radical innovations. In The Battle of the Amazons  and The Triumph of Sterility (featured below) Ubac took a solitary female nude figure and created a photo-montage before subjecting the print to the technique of virage  (toning: where different chemicals are substituted for the silver salts during the development) to achieve  startlingly different results from a single source image, some verging on the edge of abstraction and in the process subverting the notion of photography’s unquestioned realism.

48 thoughts on “Dreams of Desire 52 (Raoul Ubac)

  1. Wow, this is a really fantastic technique, especially the effect in the final three images. The Man Ray influence is obvious. Nevertheless this is definitely it’s own thing. Very cool, Cake!

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      1. Hopefully that isn’t too bad a thing. Also symbolism, erotica, libertine fiction, the occult as well. I know the focus is quite narrow which can be a weakness as well as a strength.

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  2. Wonderful surrealist. I neglected him on my blog far too long. I just added a photo of one of the mannequins exhibited in the Exposition du Surréalisme today.

    You have a stellar blog. I can see it introducing me to a lot of great art.

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    1. Thank you Roger, I am running out of Surrealists but gems keep appearing fortunately. I do not want to sacrifice the quality of the site just to make copy and I really am finding it hard to make time for fiction.

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      1. One of the best ways to keep up the fiction writing is to set out a time and a space. Then write 4 pages a day. Check them next day and write four more. That’s about an hour’s writing with lots of thought time (and other work) between sessions. This was Graham Green’s method. Highly recommended. It allows time for other things too. Alas: I love the blog but it s VERY time consuming.

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