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Florence Henri

Photographs by Florence Henri
Another point of view
In 1975 Galerie m Bochum exhibited vintage prints by Florence Henri for the first time in post-war Germany. This show gave viewers an overview of the work of one of the most important photographers of the 1920s and 30s. Her carefully orchestrated mirror compositions, photomontages and portraits represent milestones in the history of photography.

Henri, born to a French father and a German mother spent her younger days in Germany, Paris, London and Rome. In her artistic education she first concentrated on music and painting. In the Bauhaus Dessau, where she studied painting after having been at the Académie Moderne in Paris, her interest for fotography was aroused by her teacher László Moholy-Nagy. Nagy who established experimental photography at the Bauhaus, was mainly interested in the effects of light, form and composition, which becomes evident in his photographies and photogramms. The orchestration of objects, by using different kinds of illumination and the well-defined, partly constructivistic compositions in Henri's photos can surely be traced back to Moholy-Nagy's influence.
The search for new visual ways of expression is characteristic for the late 20s. Florence Henri for example merges aspects of surrealistic and constructivistic painting in her works. She creates new spatial situations by experimenting with overlappings, audacious arrangements and specular reflections. The real space and the mirrored space penetrate each other and thus confuse the viewer.

The exhibition Vintage prints by Henri in the 1970s in Galerie m showed nearly all of the at that time available prints. The pictures, dating from 1928 - 35, showed artistportraits which attest to the great psychological sensitivity of the artist, also selfportraits, landscapes and still lifes.
Around 600 visitors plus reporter from the Westdeutsche Fensehen (TV) took the chance to meet one of the most famous avantgarde photographer and to view her great oeuvre.

Florence Henri during the opening Vintage Prints
on January 24th, 1975 in Galerie m