Eating at the Velodrome, circa 1932 by Brassai will be showing in Home@735 Invitational opening on Thursday the 15th of June. This is one of 9 works from The Badger & Fox Collection we will be exhibiting including photography by Brassai, Lartigue, Kertesz, Max Dupain and Bill Henson.
Sydney artist Nick Collerson will be painting a response to Brassai’s ’Eating at the Velodrome’. The two works will be shown alongside one another in Home@735 Invitational opening in June.
Born Gyula Halász (1899 – 1984), the French photographer Brassai took his name from his hometown of Brassó in Transylvania – now Brasov in Romania. Brassai studied art at the academies of Budapest and Berlin before coming to Paris in the mid-twenties.
Brassaï’s love affair with Paris started at Montparnasse. The pulsating heart of art in Paris, the district was also known as one of its most colourful; its night-time population a kaleidoscope of petty criminals, hoodlums, streetwalkers and pleasure seekers. Brassaï’s first project seized the essence of nocturnal Paris in a series of grainy, textured pictures which set the basis for early street photography. Published in 1933 with the title ‘Paris de nuit’, this portfolio remains the most famous exploration of the city’s hidden underbelly and is considered a classic of early street photography. His series of photo-books of Paris graffiti have also been hugely influential.
One of the most renowned photographers of the interwar period, Brassaï’s reputation was built on contributions to both commercial and avant-garde photography. His long-time friend, the author Henry Miller, nicknamed him “The Eye of Paris” for his devotion to the city.
He was close to many artists including Dali, Picasso, Matisse and Giacometti – many of whom are portrayed in his collection ‘The Artists of My Life’ published in 1982. His relationship with Picasso produced many famous portraits of the artist, as well as important publications including ‘Conversations with Picasso’. The book is a compilation of the photographer’s diary entries in which the image of wartime Paris stands alongside unknown aspects of the personality of Picasso himself. Unable to wander the city streets under the curfew imposed by the German occupiers, Brassaï dedicated the early ‘40s to photographing the works of Picasso in his studio, creating a unique photo-chronicle of the artist’s creative output.