In the early 1900s, Heinrich Kuehn shifted his photographic attention from the expansive mountain landscape enjoyed by the mountain climber that he was, to the more intimidate focus of family and close friends. He would dress his four children and English nanny, Mary Warner, in clothing hand-picked for their drape and color contrast. Then they’d spend hours, even days, waiting for Kuehn to find just the right light to photograph them.
In 1906, American photographer Alfred Stieglitz organized an exhibition of photographs by Kuehn and his colleagues from Vienna. Stieglitz was a fellow Pictorialist who championed photography as an art form in its own right. In 1907, the two friends along with Edward Steichen travelled together in Europe to take pictures and discuss new color techniques.
Heinrich Kuehn and His American Circle: Alfred Stieglitz and Edward Steichen was the second photography exhibition ever held at the Neue Galerie. It featured more than 100 photographs taken by Kuehn between 1900 and 1920, as well as work by Stieglitz and Steichen. One feature was a recreation of a wall from Stieglitz’s 1906 exhibition showing the same Kuehn photographs amidst period lamps and drapery. Also of note is that the Neue held a concurrent exhibition of Gustav Klimt's work. Many of Kuehn’s photographs bear a resemblance to Klimt's paintings due to the creative shooting and processing by the photographer.
Mary Warner came to care for Kuehn's children after his wife died of tuberculosis and soon became his lover and muse. She posed for a series of shots, Study in Tonal Values, where she is shrouded by the brim of a large hat. The photograph shows shades of brown and pale pink due to his creative printing techniques. The banner used to promote the exhibition includes Study in Tonal Values III. The bottom of the banner includes the Neue Galerine logo and the words "Heinrich Kuehn and His American Circle/Alfred Stieglitz and Edward Steichen/April 26-August 27, 2012/www.neuegalerie.org" appear in all capital letters in white against a black background. Both sides of this banner are identical.
Heinrich Kuehn (1866-1944) was a doctor, mountain climber, family man, and photographer. His early photographic work was influential in the fin de siècle, an important turning point for the birth of modernism. As a member of the Viennese avant-garde, Kuehn's photographs were exhibited at the Vienna Secession. He and other photographers of the early 1900s are credited with establishment of photography as an art form, and with early color photography.
Pushing the aesthetic potential of photography, Heinrich Kuehn was "photoshopping" images long before the invention of the main frame. He used an intricate printing process called gum bichromate to create photographic images with rich tonal variations. By coating art paper with color pigments, gum arabic, and photo-sensitive chromate, Kuehn produced color images through multiple light exposures. He was a founder of
, a photographic style in which the photographer manipulates the shot to create an image rather than to simply capture its existence. Study in Tonal Values III is one such photographic image that, at first glance, looks like a Secessionist painting. Study in Tonal Values III was used on the banner to promote the Neue Galerie’s exhibition, Heinrich Kuehn and His American Circle: Alfred Stieglitz and Edward Steichen.
Hanging your banner
Hanging your banner is easy – just put a few screws in the wall or ceiling and PRESTO, you’re ready to display your beautiful banner. To make it even easier, each BetterWall banner comes with a free hanging system that gives the impression that your banner is floating just an inch off the wall.
Your museum banner has one or more windslits, half-moon shaped cuts that allow the banner to withstand high wind without ripping. To prevent the windslits from curling so that they align with the rest of your banner, we will provide you with a packet of art putty to apply to the back of the windslits to keep them aligned with the rest of the banner. The putty is a non-damaging, easy-to-remove, reusable art putty that will not impact your banner or walls in any way. After some time of displaying your banner, you may find that you no longer need the putty, and it can be easily removed.
Caring for your banner
Your banner is a unique and durable piece of art. Having been displayed outside, it has weathered the elements and remained beautiful—so it can obviously take a lot of wear and tear! Slight scuffs, small smudges, or minor creases are not noticeable when the banner is hung, and are a part of the banner’s authentic appeal.
Storing your banner
When not on display, your banner can be rolled and stored in the tube provided. Always roll your banner from the bottom and place it in a cool place.