Avocado Night Thread

The Moholy-Nagy Photograms Night Thread (July 4, 2020)

Hungarian-born artist and photographer László Moholy-Nagy (1895-1946) was a “relentless experimentalist” who taught at the Bauhaus in Germany, most influential Modernist art school of the 20th century. He was a self-taught artist who started drawing during his military service during the First World War, and by 1922 held his first public exhibition. Later he relocated first to Amsterdam, then London, then finally America, where he established the Institute of Design in Chicago; now part of the Illinois Institute of Technology. His interests were numerous and he delved into commercial design, magazine art editing, theatre design, and film-making, as well as being a prolific writer.

The experimental art of his I’d like to share with you tonight are some of his “Photograms”, or photographs created without a camera. These were made by pressing objects against light-sensitive paper and then playing with exposure times. He was not the only photographer in the 1920s to work with this process; Christian Schad called his ‘Schadographs’ and Man Ray named his own “Rayographs”; Moholo-Nagy seemed not to be so egotistical about the process, however.

Enjoy your night, everyone!