Quatrième Année Salon de Photographie – 1897


Instead of  an exposition, the more fashionable “salon” was designated by the Photo-Club de Paris for their fourth international exhibition of photographic art for 1897. The show was held at the Galerie Des Champs Elysées in Paris from  April 13- 28, 1897. One franc gained admittance to the exhibit. The Photo-Club de Paris was created by members who seceded from the Société de Francaise de Photographie and included the influential French photographers Robert Demachy and Constant Puyo.

Unlike the previous three years, the fourth and final year 1897 portfolio does not include letterpress listing all photographers who gained admittance to the exhibition. (There were however successive year Salons hosted by the club including the 1898 installment running May 3-29 at the Galerie Des Champs Elysées). Photographers by country whose work is reproduced in this 1897 portfolio are as follows:

20 – France
8 – England / Scotland
4 – Austria
3 – United States
1 – Belgium
1 – Germany
1 – Switzerland

This portfolio of large-plate, hand-pulled heliogravures (photogravures), was the personal copy of Photo-Club de Paris founder member Constant Puyo.  It is example  #40 of 200 deluxe copies printed on Vélin paper (wove plate) manufactured by Blanchet and Kléber of Rives, France.  Another 30 examples were issued printed in a double suite of plates on Impérial Japan paper as well as Vélin.  All plates in this portfolio were printed by the French atelier Charles Wittmann. The majority of the copper plates for the plate impressions were engraved by the Paris atelier of  Fillon et Heuse. Others are by Blechinger  (2) and  Meisenbach (1).  Letterpress was executed by L’Imprimerie Chaix.

There are 38 large plate photogravures in this portfolio, a major reduction compared to those issued between 1894-1896. The first year folio (1894) showcased 64 photographs printed on 56 individual plates.

Progress was slowly being made on the judging front. The inclusion of the well regarded amateur photographers Hector Colard (Belgium: 1851-1923), Paul Bergon (France: 1863-1912) and René Le Beque (France: 1857-1914) on the judging panel for the 1897 salon confirms this.