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August Sander


1876 - 1964 Herdorf, Germany

The German photographer’s portraits are full-face and typically quite uncompromising shots with carefully considered composition, where nothing is intended for effect or spectacle. Sander was able to capture the individuality and character traits of his subjects, while openly demonstrating that they belonged to a specific social group. Consequently his photographs are a representative slice of interwar German society and also a fascinating historical document, rather than merely a collection of portraits. -


It activates our ability to dream or to change our perception. Implementing this simple but significant fact, August Sander created one of the first group of works that portrayed the world as an equal and humanistically balanced group. By focusing on the individual person as a reference rather than the class status, gender or health, Sander has a created a view of the world which we are still striving to fulfil. -

August Sander (17 November 1876 – 20 April 1964) was a German portrait and documentary photographer. Sander's first book Face of our Time (German: Antlitz der Zeit) was published in 1929. Sander has been described as "the most important German portrait photographer of the early twentieth century."

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A foundation in Cologne has reacted with shock to the announcement by Hauser & Wirth gallery regarding the representation of the estate of August Sander. “The estate of August Sander is and has been in Cologne,” the foundation has asserted in a public statement.
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Share Tweet Save More When August Sander conceived of the structure of his ambitious portrait series, “People of the Twentieth Century,” his goal was to document the German people in a way that rejected the era’s social divisions.
LANDSCAPES Photographs 1926–1946 By August Sander
Thanks to such striking creations as the portrait book Face of Our Time, August Sander (1876–1964) is renowned today as a master of documentary photography. In 1975, German readers were introduced to another side of Sander’s work with the Rheinlandschaften, a collection of stunning images of the Rhineland captured in the first half of the twentieth century.
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