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Portrait Photography

In the 1830s, Nièpce discovered the process for setting images onto pewter plates. In 1833, upon Nièpce’s death, Louis Daguerre and François Arago continued his experiments and invented the daguerreotype, a process which created a printed image on a silver plate that had been exposed to light. Photography was born.

Similarly to how portrait painting had dominated artistic output in previous centuries, portrait photography was to become the pillar of the Second French Empire’s photographic industry. Lenses with a shorter focal length, which enabled reduced exposure times, gradually appear on the market. The required equipment was expensive and difficult to handle. Some photographers, called daguerreotypists, decided to open their own photography studios to make a profit from their endeavours. The daguerreotype process was temperamental, and photographers had to take their pictures with great precision and attention to detail. They welcomed many people into their studios and customers choose how they wished to be photographed from catalogue of poses. Originally only accessible to the bourgeoisie, lower prices resulting from the growing number of studios eventually attracted a wider customer base. This phenomenon infuriated the poet Charles Baudelaire who was frustrated by the sense of narcissism sparked by the daguerreotypists.

Despite his protests, the egotistical trend only grew with the emergence of ‘carte de visite’ portraits (small photographs, the size of today’s business cards). These were the brainchild of Adolphe Eugène Disdéri came up with the idea of producing portraits akin to visiting cards in 1859. He printed eight portraits in a variety of poses onto a single plate and once developed they could be cut up into eight distinct “visiting cards”. Very popular with the bourgeoisie, they highlighted the sitters’ social status. ‘Carte de visite’ portraits featuring celebrities were also sold to customers, who could subsequently add them to their albums.

The photographer Nadar was one of the first to demonstrate a conscious artistic approach to producing these portraits. He emphasised facial expressions and ensured the sitter was comfortable and at ease before taking the photograph. He photographed the era’s greatest thinkers and artists, including Honoré de Balzac, George Sand, and Victor Hugo. He even managed to reconcile Baudelaire with portraiture.

At the end of the 19th century, the art of photography started to enter the mainstream, with the arrival of the Kodak company. The use of the camera, and the taking of portraits, became everyday occurrences. A century later, it was the invention of the digital camera which challenged the status quo. Whereas before alterations could only be made to photographs when they were being taken or developed, with the digital camera editing became easier, quicker and more convenient. Digital photography has given photographers much more freedom when it comes to editing and new methods and techniques are constantly being explored.

Some of the photographers who have left their mark on the last century include: Cindy Sherman, who excelled in self-portraits, Annie Leibovitz, who captured celebrities, the wacky duo, Pierre and Gilles, as well as Diane Arbus, Irving Penn, Richard Avedon, Helmut Newton, and Bettina Rheims.

So, do portraits help us to learn more about each other, to remember, to invent, to act, or to reconnect with ourselves? Find out on Artsper, by exploring the works of Formento & Formento, Naomi Vona, Ahmed Bennani, Chou Ching Hui, Samuel Cueto, Brno del Zou, Ren Hang, Markus + Indrani, Jerome Liebling as well as Annina Roescheisen.



Collector’s Guide: Collecting Fine Art Photographs

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price,500 facet,10503*Oeuvres d’artistes best sellers|icon-bestsellers*bestsellers facet,10503*Werke von Bestseller-Künstlern|icon-bestsellers*werke-von-kunstlern-bestseller facet,10503*Artworks by best-selling artists|icon-bestsellers*bestsellers facet,10503*Obras de los artistas más vendidos|icon-bestsellers*obras-de-los-artistas-mas-vendidos price,1001:5000 price,501:1000 facet,10500*Oeuvres d'artistes émergents|icon-youngtalents*jeunes-talents facet,10500*Werke aufstrebender Künstler|icon-youngtalents*werke-von-jungen-kunstlern facet,10500*Young Talents|icon-youngtalents*youngtalents facet,10500*Obras de artistas emergentes|icon-youngtalents*obras-de-artistas-emergentes category,6*Peinture*peinture category,6*Painting*painting category,6*Gemälde*gemalde category,6*Pintura*pintura facet,8259*Nos recommandations|icon-recommendations*recommandations facet,8259*unsere Empfehlungen|icon-recommendations*unsere-empfehlungen facet,8259*Our recommendations|icon-recommendations*recommendations facet,8259*Nuestras recomendaciones|icon-recommendations*nuestras-recomendaciones facet,1629*Abstraite*abstraite facet,1629*abstracto*abstracto facet,1629*abstrakt*abstrakt facet,1629*Abstract*abstract facet,8274*Moyen (\u003c 115 x 115 cm)|medium*moyen facet,8274*Moyen (\u003c 45 x 45 inch)|medium*moyen facet,10497*Oeuvres d'artistes célèbres|icon-masterpieces*artistes-celebres facet,10497*Artworks by famous artists|icon-masterpieces*masterpieces facet,10497*Werke berühmter Künstler|icon-masterpieces*werke-beruhmter-kunstler facet,10497*Obras de artistas famosos|icon-masterpieces*obras-de-artistas-famosos facet,8277*Grand (\u003c 200 x 200 cm)|large*grand facet,8277*Grand (\u003c 80 x 80 inch)|large*grand facet,1635*arte callejero*arte-callejero facet,1635*Street art*street-art facet,1635*Straßenkunst*street-art facet,1671*Natur*natur facet,1671*Landscape*nature facet,1671*Paysage*nature facet,1671*Naturaleza*naturaleza facet,8277*Large (\u003c 200 x 200 cm)|large*large facet,8277*Large (\u003c 80 x 80 inch)|large*large facet,1686*Pop Art*pop-art facet,1686*Arte pop*arte-pop facet,1686*Pop-Art*pop-art facet,1644*Portrait*portrait facet,1644*Porträt*portrat facet,1644*Retrato*retrato category,5*Sculpture*sculpture category,5*Skulptur*skulptur category,5*Escultura*escultura category,9*Photographie*photographie category,9*Fotografie*fotografie category,9*Photography*photography category,9*Fotografía*fotografia facet,1641*Nude*nude facet,1641*Akt*akte facet,1641*Nus*nus facet,1641*desnudos*desnudos price,1000:501 facet,1830*Paysage|landscape*orientation-paysage facet,1830*Landscape|landscape*orientation-landscape facet,1830*Landschaft|landscape*orientation-landschaft facet,1830*Paisaje|landscape*orientation-paisaje facet,8274*Medium (\u003c 115 x 115 cm)|medium*medium facet,8274*Medium (\u003c 45 x 45 inch)|medium*medium facet,8280*Très grand (\u003e 200 x 200 cm)|very-large*tres-grand facet,8280*Très grand (\u003e 80 x 80 inch)|very-large*tres-grand category,15*Edition*edition category,15*Print*print category,15*Druck*editionen category,15*Edición*edicion category,23*Dessin*dessin category,23*Zeichnung*zeichnung category,23*Fine Art Drawings*drawing category,23*Dibujo*dibujo facet,1827*Portrait|portrait*orientation-portrait facet,1827*Hochformat|portrait*orientation-portrat facet,1827*Retrato|portrait*orientation-retrato facet,8301*Oeuvres en promotion|icon-promotions*promotions facet,8301*Special offers|icon-promotions*promotions facet,8301*Special Offers|icon-promotions*vergunstigte-werke facet,8301*Trabajos en promoción|icon-promotions*trabajos-en-promocion facet,1674*Scène de vie*scene-de-vie facet,1674*Everyday life*everyday-life facet,1674*Etchleben*etchleben facet,1674*Escena de la vida*escena-de-la-vida facet,8271*Petit (\u003c 50 x 50 cm)|small*petit facet,1680*Animaux*animaux facet,1680*Animal*animal facet,1680*Tier*tier facet,1680*Animales*animales facet,1668*Noir et blanc*noir-et-blanc facet,1668*Black and white*black-and-white facet,1668*Schwarz und weiß*schwarz-und-weiss facet,1668*Blanco y negro*blanco-y-negro facet,1632*Architecture*architecture facet,1632*Die Architektur*die-architektur facet,1632*Arquitectura*arquitectura facet,8280*Very large (\u003e 200 x 200 cm)|very-large*very-large facet,8280*Very large (\u003e 80 x 80 inch)|very-large*very-large price,50001 price,5001:10000 facet,1659*Flora*flora facet,1659*Flore*flore facet,1659*Floral*floral facet,1659*Flores*flores facet,1650*Paysage urbain*paysage-urbain facet,1650*Urban Landscape*urban-landscape facet,1650*Städtische Landschaft*stadtische-landschaft facet,1650*Paisaje urbano*paisaje-urbano facet,1692*Géométrique*geometrique facet,1692*Geometric*geometric facet,1692*Geometrisch*geometrisch facet,1692*Geometría*geometria facet,1656*Grafik*grafik facet,1656*Graphique*graphique facet,1656*Graphic*graphic facet,1656*Gráfico*grafico facet,11634*Pop culture Street-artistes*pop-culture-street-artistes facet,11634*Pop Culture Street Artists*pop-culture-street-artists facet,11634*Popkultur Straßenkünstler*popkultur-strassenkunstler facet,11634*Cultura pop Street-artistas*cultura-pop-street-artistas facet,12*noir|050002*noir facet,12*Black|050002*black facet,12*schwarz|050002*schwarz facet,12*negro|050002*negro facet,1833*Carré|square*orientation-carre facet,1833*Square|square*orientation-square facet,1833*Quadrat|square*orientation-platz facet,1833*Cuadrado|square*orientation-cuadrado price,5000:1001 facet,30*Dark blue|0707BD*dark-blue facet,30*bleu foncé|0707BD*bleu-fonce facet,30*Dunkelblau|0707BD*dunkelblau facet,30*azul oscuro|0707BD*azul-oscuro
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Our recommendations Joanna Chudy, In White, Blue, Red, Photography

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In White, Blue, Red, 2014
60 x 50 cm
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Our recommendations Bert Stern, Marilyn Laughing in Black Dress, Photography

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Laura Joy Jourdan, Respiration, Photography

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100 x 70 cm
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Sven Pfrommer, Backstage IX, Photography

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100 x 100 x 3 cm
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Gabriel Dia, Sabar, Photography

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45 x 30 cm
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€1,400

Jakub Pasierkiewicz, Shreds of Memory XVIII, Photography

Jakub Pasierkiewicz

Shreds of Memory XVIII, 2021
100 x 70 x 0.3 cm
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€1,215 €1,093

David Van Dartel, Sil in het Duister II/Sil in the Dark II, Photography

David Van Dartel

Sil in het Duister II/Sil in the Dark II, 2020
49 x 33 cm
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Our recommendations Faie Davis, Karo party person, Photography

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40 x 30 x 0.1 cm
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€883

Eric Chauvet, Mon Monde est Infini 2, Photography

Eric Chauvet

Mon Monde est Infini 2, 2019
30 x 30 x 0.5 cm
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€170

Karol Kállay, Two bellow a Tree, Photography

Karol Kállay

Two bellow a Tree, 1966
40 x 50 cm
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€3,200

Mathieu Puga, Jenna, Photography

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Jenna, 2021
75 x 50 x 0.1 cm
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€499

Franck Leclerc, Oblique Black, Photography

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Oblique Black, 2020
80 x 120 x 0.3 cm
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€1,500

Our recommendations Charlotte Abramow, Rouge sur Blanc, Photography

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10 x 15 cm
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€450

Maria Baranova, Water, Photography

Maria Baranova

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42 x 30 x 0.3 cm
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€950

Marine Foissey, Toutes les fashion addicts se posent LA question mais que porter cet été, Photography

Marine Foissey

Toutes les fashion addicts se posent LA question mais que porter cet été, 2018
40 x 60 x 1 cm
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€890

Our recommendations Alvaro Gracia, Deconstructing the Rainbow, Photography

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Deconstructing the Rainbow, 2021
28 x 21 x 0.3 cm
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€100

Hadrien Durand-Baïssas, Hazy Soul, Photography

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70 x 70 cm
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€400

Our recommendations Bernard Pras, 152 - Van Gogh, Photography

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152 - Van Gogh, 2013
106 x 80 x 3 cm
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Souan, Femme au chat, Photography

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35 x 30 x 0.1 cm
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€395

Joséphine Leddet, Sans-titre #1, Photography

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Sans-titre #1, 2020
50 x 40 cm
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€500

Duane Michals, Magritte X 3, Photography

Duane Michals

Magritte X 3, 1965
28 x 33.6 cm
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€8,500

Julie Lagier, L'éveil, Photography

Julie Lagier

L'éveil, 2021
90 x 60 cm
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€2,100

Our recommendations John Kenny, Kashi, Photography

John Kenny

Kashi, 2014
67 x 45 x 2 cm
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€1,150

Claire Giraudeau, Urbain brutalisme, Photography

Claire Giraudeau

Urbain brutalisme, 2021
40 x 30 cm
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€100

Our recommendations Grzegorz Sikorski, Cinematography inspired sessions #1, Photography

Grzegorz Sikorski

Cinematography inspired sessions #1, 2019
60 x 45 x 0.1 cm
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€190

Our recommendations Dasha Pears, Head in the Clouds, Photography

Dasha Pears

Head in the Clouds, 2020
100 x 100 x 0.1 cm
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€1,670

Our recommendations Hassan Hajjaj, V.B.F., Photography

Hassan Hajjaj

V.B.F., 2011
72 x 48 x 1 cm
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€17,000

Our recommendations Bruno Timmermans, Aï +, Photography

Bruno Timmermans

Aï +, 2012
150 x 150 cm
Photography

€5,000 €4,250

Our recommendations Muriel Deumie, Dans la machine, Photography

Muriel Deumie

Dans la machine, 2021
80 x 60 x 1 cm
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€550

Our recommendations Just Jaeckin, Dalida Cheveux fous (1966), Photography

Just Jaeckin

Dalida Cheveux fous (1966), 2014
80 x 60 x 1 cm
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€1,290

Our recommendations David Lynch, Emily scream #1, Photography

David Lynch

Emily scream #1, 2008
84 x 84 cm
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€10,000

Our recommendations Samuel Cueto, Kum kum, Photography

Samuel Cueto

Kum kum, 2018
50 x 40 cm
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€900

Our recommendations Lucien Clergue, Picasso Preside la Corrida - Frejus, 1962, Photography

Lucien Clergue

Picasso Preside la Corrida - Frejus, 1962, 1962
45.7 x 55.9 cm
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€10,816

Our recommendations Uwe Ommer, Fashion on the Street, Paris 1963, Photography

Uwe Ommer

Fashion on the Street, Paris 1963, 1963
50.8 x 40.6 x 0.3 cm
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Our recommendations Irene Cruz, Drowning in Blue e5, Photography

Irene Cruz

Drowning in Blue e5, 2018
25 x 25 x 1 cm
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€370

Our recommendations Man Ray, Untitled Portrait of Female, Photography

Man Ray

Untitled Portrait of Female, 1940
25.7 x 26 cm
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Our recommendations Fabienne Cresens, La montée des eaux, Photography

Fabienne Cresens

La montée des eaux, 2018
100 x 100 cm
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€1,100

Our recommendations Natasha Zupan, Sphere of Life, #2238, Mixed-Media Collage, Photography

Natasha Zupan

Sphere of Life, #2238, Mixed-Media Collage, 2018
54 x 44 x 2.5 cm
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€1,442

Pierre et Gilles, Le doigt de dieu Etienne Daho, Photography

Pierre et Gilles

Le doigt de dieu Etienne Daho, 2017
25 x 18 x 1 cm
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€4,500

Our recommendations Nobuyoshi Araki, Shojo Monogatari (Girls Story), Photography

Nobuyoshi Araki

Shojo Monogatari (Girls Story), 1988
53.1 x 42.2 cm
Photography

€10,000

Our recommendations Alain Longeaud, Chien andalou, Photography

Alain Longeaud

Chien andalou, 1975
65 x 50 cm
Photography

€1,600

Our recommendations Annie Leibovitz, Andy Warhol, New York City, Photography

Annie Leibovitz

Andy Warhol, New York City, 1976
50.8 x 40.6 cm
Photography

€45,067

Mehdi Mirbagheri, Série des Pin Up N°2, Photography

Mehdi Mirbagheri

Série des Pin Up N°2, 2015
80 x 80 x 1 cm
Photography

€2,000

Our recommendations Angélique, White Spirit I, Photography

Angélique

White Spirit I, 2005
50 x 40 cm
Photography

€1,500

Our recommendations Su Yang, A Strange Encounter, Photography

Su Yang

A Strange Encounter, 2017
50 x 40 x 0.3 cm
Photography

€750

Our recommendations David Drebin, Photographing herself, Photography

David Drebin

Photographing herself, 2009
50 x 64 cm
Photography

€4,500

Our recommendations Karine Paoli, Têtes d'Affiches #3, Photography

Karine Paoli

Têtes d'Affiches #3, 2001
122 x 76 x 3 cm
Photography

€2,000

Our recommendations Louis Blanc, TEstacEus, Photography

Louis Blanc

TEstacEus, 2011
100 x 100 x 0.3 cm
Photography

€1,800

Larry Clark, Sans titre 3 (Jonathan), Photography

Larry Clark

Sans titre 3 (Jonathan), 2005
23 x 17 x 0.02 cm
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€350

Ifig, Jungle Fever (Série), Photography

Ifig

Jungle Fever (Série), 2021
42 x 30 cm
Photography

€500

Our recommendations John Yuyi, I love I 2, Photography

John Yuyi

I love I 2, 2016
50 x 40 x 0.35 cm
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€1,200

Our recommendations Sarah Maple, Fighting Fire with Fire, Photography

Sarah Maple

Fighting Fire with Fire, 2013
61 x 49 cm
Photography

€500

Our recommendations Ka Xiaoxi, Taylor, Photography

Ka Xiaoxi

Taylor, 2009
40 x 60 x 0.2 cm
Photography

€1,450

Monika Nowak, Who's That Guy, Photography

Monika Nowak

Who's That Guy, 2015
140 x 70 cm
Photography

€1,300

Our recommendations Yagazie Emezi, When Did A Piece Fall Off #4, Photography

Yagazie Emezi

When Did A Piece Fall Off #4, 2016
41.9 x 59.4 cm
Photography

€766

Our recommendations Claude Lévêque, Oriflamme, Photography

Claude Lévêque

Oriflamme, 2019
30 x 30 x 1 cm
Photography

€550

Our recommendations Stefanie Schneider, Every single incident weighs tons (The Girl behind the White Picket Fence), Photography

Stefanie Schneider

Every single incident weighs tons (The Girl behind the White Picket Fence), 2013
20 x 20 x 0.1 cm
Photography

€550

José Nicolas, Accra, Photography

José Nicolas

Accra, 2017
40 x 50 cm
Photography

€990

Monica Denevan, Anchor, Photography

Monica Denevan

Anchor, 2013
40 x 50 cm
Photography

€1,033

Our recommendations David Djian, Hope, Photography

David Djian

Hope, 2019
80 x 53.33 x 0.2 cm
Photography

€750

Ceridwen Raynor, Captured by the Wind, Photography

Ceridwen Raynor

Captured by the Wind, 2019
75 x 75 cm
Photography

€850

Our recommendations Malick Sidibé, Vue de dos, Photography

Malick Sidibé

Vue de dos, 2003
24 x 18.5 cm
Photography

€700

Paloma Castello, Marlene Dietrich, from the Castelloland series, Photography

Paloma Castello

Marlene Dietrich, from the Castelloland series, 2018
83.8 x 119.9 x 0.3 cm
Photography

€1,803

Thomas Dellert, Cinéma Français Paris, Photography

Thomas Dellert

Cinéma Français Paris, 2016
40 x 60 x 1 cm
Photography

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