Aperture masters of photography #4: roger fenton
Roger Fenton achieved widespread fame for his coverage of the Crimean War, as it was the first extensive photographic documentation of a war. "The Valley of the Shadow of Death" is regarded as one of the most important photographs of war that has ever been recorded. However, the Crimean photographs account for only a small section of the thousands that he produced, and of the many subjects in which he took an interest.
Fenton's work was greatly admired by Queen Victoria, and he was commissioned to take portraits of the royal family. He traveled and photographed extensively in the United Kingdom and Russia. He also photographed still lifes and landscapes. These landscapes, full of Romantic poetic sensibility, may be the greatest tribute to his art, revealing the audacity and innovation of his vision, together with a sense of serene harmony. They provide a unique view of the Victorian aesthetic.
In an introductory essay, Richard Pare provides an account of the artist's life, and his many and varied contributions to the art of photography.
Aperture, New York, 1987