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Black and white Photography

Black and white photography is today one of countless photographic techniques and yet it was as at one time, the only type of photography available. This is the reason why it often tends to be associated with historical works and a vintage feel.

In the 1830s, Nièpce discovered how to print images onto metal plates. When he died in 1833, Louis Daguerre, followed by Francois Arago, continued to develop his research, resulting in the invention of the daguerreotype which consisted of an image printed onto a silver plate when exposed to the light. Together they invented photography.

The first black and white photos began to appear. Initially used for research purposes, photography started to spread as daguerreotype studios opened everywhere. Black and white portraits immortalised the faces of the upper middle classes and would later be used to capture all members of society. Celebrities were also a popular subject choice and many photographers specialised in taking their portraits, as Jean-Loup Sieff did all throughout his career almost a century after the invention of photography.

The first coloured photographs soon followed. The technique was invented as early as 1860 but was not put to use until a century later. In the meantime, many unforgettable artists began to demonstrate their talents for art photography. Street photography, for example, was a key trend during the 20th century, with major photographers such as Robert Doisneau, Brassi and Henri Cartier-Bresson capturing the urban landscape of the time. All three were masters of taking candid photos. They succeeded in making fleeting moments last forever in monochrome images. Sometimes humorous, sometimes romantic, or even just a little bizarre, they take us back in time to days gone by. Looking at such rare and fragile moments can be like going through old postcards from the past, and although we enjoy looking at them, they can provoke a sense of nostalgia and melancholy.

In the United States, the humanist Walker Evans led the way for black and white photography, capturing the daily life of modern America with his analogue camera, whether it be in the New York subway or on the highways of the Deep South. A little later, Robert Frank photographed the faces of America and the American people with his remarkable black and white shots, recognisable thanks to his highly distinctive photographic technique and composition.

Black and white photography isn't just limited to representing daily life. As Ansel Adams demonstrates, it can also be used to capture the most magnificent landscapes. Black and white images are ideal for long-exposure photography, as the combination of the two makes it seem as if time is gently floating by. Michael Kenna and Arnaud Bertrande are two examples of photographers who excel in this domain.

It is easy to be fascinated by how perfectly the two colours complement each other in certain images. We often associate black with a sense of sadness and nothingness whilst white is suggestive of light and hope (although the Western signification of the colour white contrasts with that of other cultures, for example in Japan, white symbolises death). The combination of the two shades highlights the contrast and accentuates the shapes in the image with elegance and simplicity. It often draws our attention to a rather unique subject and our perception of it can vary depending on the chosen shades and centring. It is often used to create a sense of nostalgia and history to convey a timeless message that seems frozen in time.

Travel back in time with Artsper's collection of black and white limited edition art photographs, available in big and small formats, from artists including Brno Del Zou, Bert Stern, Ellen Von Unwert, Karl-Martin Holzhäuzer, Wang Wusheng, Lee Jeffries and Hervé Gloaguen.We also recommend Herve Hall's images of the Brooklyn Bridge and the beautiful sepia photos of the Eiffel Tower by Jean-Paul Lubliner.

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*Artworks by best-selling artists|icon-bestsellers*bestsellers facet,10503*Werke von Bestseller-Künstlern|icon-bestsellers*werke-von-kunstlern-bestseller facet,10503*Obras de los artistas más vendidos|icon-bestsellers*obras-de-los-artistas-mas-vendidos category,6*Peinture*peinture category,6*Painting*painting category,6*Gemälde*gemalde category,6*Pintura*pintura price,501:1000 facet,10500*Young Talents|icon-youngtalents*youngtalents facet,10500*Oeuvres d'artistes émergents|icon-youngtalents*jeunes-talents facet,10500*Werke von aufstrebenden Künstlern|icon-youngtalents*werke-von-jungen-kunstlern facet,10500*Obras de artistas emergentes|icon-youngtalents*obras-de-artistas-emergentes facet,10500*Werke aufstrebender Künstler|icon-youngtalents*werke-von-jungen-kunstlern facet,8274*Moyen (\u003c 115 x 115 cm)*moyen facet,8274*Moyen (\u003c 45 x 45 inch)*moyen facet,8274*Moyen (\u003c 115 x 115 cm)|medium*moyen facet,8274*Moyen (\u003c 45 x 45 inch)|medium*moyen facet,8277*Grand (\u003c 200 x 200 cm)*grand facet,8277*Grand (\u003c 80 x 80 inch)*grand facet,8277*Grand (\u003c 200 x 200 cm)|large*grand facet,8277*Grand (\u003c 80 x 80 inch)|large*grand facet,1629*Abstraite*abstraite facet,1629*abstrakt*abstrakt facet,1629*Abstract*abstract facet,1629*abstracto*abstracto 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,8259*Our recommendations|icon-recommendations*recommendations facet,8259*unsere Empfehlungen|icon-recommendations*unsere-empfehlungen facet,8259*Nos recommandations|icon-recommendations*recommandations facet,8259*Nuestras recomendaciones|icon-recommendations*nuestras-recomendaciones price,1001:5000 facet,1635*Street art*street-art facet,1635*arte callejero*arte-callejero facet,1635*Straßenkunst*street-art category,5*Sculpture*sculpture category,5*Skulptur*skulptur category,5*Escultura*escultura category,9*Photography*photography category,9*Photographie*photographie category,9*Fotografie*fotografie category,9*Fotografía*fotografia facet,1671*Nature*nature facet,1671*Natur*natur facet,1671*Naturaleza*naturaleza facet,1644*Portrait*portrait facet,1644*Porträt*portrat facet,1644*Retrato*retrato facet,1686*Pop Art*pop-art facet,1686*Arte pop*arte-pop facet,1686*Pop-Art*pop-art facet,8280*Très grand (\u003e 200 x 200 cm)*tres-grand 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,23*Dessin*dessin category,23*Zeichnung*zeichnung category,23*Fine Art Drawings*drawing category,23*Dibujo*dibujo price,1000:501 facet,1641*Akt*akte facet,1641*Nus*nus facet,1641*desnudos*desnudos facet,1641*Nude*nude category,15*Edition*edition category,15*Print*print category,15*Druck*editionen category,15*Edición*edicion facet,1827*Portrait*orientation-portrait facet,1827*Hochformat*orientation-portrat facet,1827*Portrait|portrait*orientation-portrait facet,1827*Retrato*orientation-retrato facet,1827*Retrato|portrait*orientation-retrato facet,1827*Hochformat|portrait*orientation-portrat facet,8277*Large (\u003c 80 x 80 inch)*large facet,8277*Large (\u003c 200 x 200 cm)*large facet,8277*Large (\u003c 80 x 80 inch)|large*large facet,8277*Large (\u003c 200 x 200 cm)|large*large facet,1830*Paysage*orientation-paysage facet,1830*Paisaje*orientation-paisaje facet,1830*Landscape*orientation-landscape facet,1830*Landschaft*orientation-landschaft facet,1830*Paisaje|landscape*orientation-paisaje facet,1830*Paysage|landscape*orientation-paysage facet,1830*Landschaft|landscape*orientation-landschaft facet,1830*Landscape|landscape*orientation-landscape facet,8301*Oeuvres en promotion|icon-promotions*promotions facet,8301*Special Offers|icon-promotions*vergunstigte-werke facet,8301*Special offers|icon-promotions*promotions facet,8301*Trabajos en promoción|icon-promotions*trabajos-en-promocion facet,8274*Medium (\u003c 115 x 115 cm)*medium facet,8274*Medium (\u003c 45 x 45 inch)*medium facet,8274*Medium (\u003c 45 x 45 inch)|medium*medium facet,8274*Medium (\u003c 115 x 115 cm)|medium*medium facet,1674*Etchleben*etchleben facet,1674*Scène de vie*scene-de-vie facet,1674*Everyday life*everyday-life facet,1674*Escena de la vida*escena-de-la-vida facet,1680*Tier*tier facet,1680*Animales*animales facet,1680*Animaux*animaux facet,1680*Animal*animal facet,8271*Petit (\u003c 50 x 50 cm)*petit facet,8271*Petit (\u003c 20 x 20 inch)*petit facet,8271*Petit (\u003c 50 x 50 cm)|small*petit facet,8271*Petit (\u003c 20 x 20 inch)|small*petit facet,8280*Very large (\u003e 200 x 200 cm)*very-large facet,8280*Very large (\u003e 80 x 80 inch)*very-large facet,8280*Very large (\u003e 80 x 80 inch)|very-large*very-large facet,8280*Very large (\u003e 200 x 200 cm)|very-large*very-large facet,126*acrylique*acrylique facet,126*acrylic*acrylic facet,126*Acryl-*acryl facet,126*acrílico*acrilico facet,108*huile*huile facet,108*al oleo*al-oleo facet,108*oil*oil facet,108*Öl*ol price,50001 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 price,5001:10000 facet,1632*Architecture*architecture facet,1632*Die Architektur*die-architektur facet,1632*Arquitectura*arquitectura facet,1659*Flore*flore facet,1659*Flora*flora facet,1659*Floral*floral facet,1659*Flores*flores facet,1650*Paysage urbain*paysage-urbain facet,1650*Paisaje urbano*paisaje-urbano facet,1650*Städtische Landschaft*stadtische-landschaft facet,1650*Urban Landscape*urban-landscape facet,12*noir|050002*noir facet,12*Black|050002*black facet,12*schwarz|050002*schwarz facet,12*negro|050002*negro price,10001:25000 facet,42*Rouge|FC2912*rouge facet,42*Red|FC2912*red facet,42*rot|FC2912*rot facet,42*Rojo|FC2912*rojo price,25001:50000 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 facet,1692*Geometric*geometric facet,1692*Géométrique*geometrique facet,1692*Geometrisch*geometrisch facet,1692*Geometría*geometria
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Lionel le Jeune, Reservoir (Piezography), Photography

Lionel le Jeune

Reservoir (Piezography), 2021
50 x 70 x 0.5 cm
Photography

$631

Our recommendations Christo and Jeanne-Claude, Cubic Feet Empaquetages, Photography

Christo and Jeanne-Claude

Cubic Feet Empaquetages, 1971
50 x 70 x 0.2 cm
Photography

$5,162

Alain Longeaud, Pivoines, Photography

Alain Longeaud

Pivoines, 2015
65 x 50 x 3 cm
Photography

$1,835

Ed Feingersh, Marilyn on the Roof, Photography

Ed Feingersh

Marilyn on the Roof, 2020
76.2 x 50.8 cm
Photography

$718

Alexander Benz, Touchy, Photography

Alexander Benz

Touchy, 2021
80 x 80 x 0.1 cm
Photography

$2,065

László Moholy-Nagy, Jealousy, Photography

László Moholy-Nagy

Jealousy, 2020
76.2 x 50.8 cm
Photography

$1,149

Fabrizio La Torre, Uomini e Cappelli, 1955 - New York, Photography

Fabrizio La Torre

Uomini e Cappelli, 1955 - New York, 1955
60 x 42 x 0.5 cm
Photography

$1,893 $1,514

Our recommendations Mariana Falcao, Joadila, Madre de Deus, Ba, Photography

Mariana Falcao

Joadila, Madre de Deus, Ba, 2020
20 x 30 cm
Photography

$172

Hank Gans, Empire, New York City, Photography

Hank Gans

Empire, New York City, 2014
48.3 x 33 cm
Photography

$1,500

John French, Madeleine Rampling, Photography

John French

Madeleine Rampling, 2020
50.8 x 50.8 cm
Photography

$725

Gabriel Lekegian, Rue Sook el Silah, Photography

Gabriel Lekegian

Rue Sook el Silah, 2020
101.6 x 76.2 cm
Photography

$472

Gustave Le Gray, The Brig, Photography

Gustave Le Gray

The Brig, 2020
76.2 x 101.6 cm
Photography

$472

Herbert Ponting, The Castle Berg, Photography

Herbert Ponting

The Castle Berg, 2020
76.2 x 101.6 cm
Photography

$472

Shepherd & Robertson, The Taj Mahal At Agra, Photography

Shepherd & Robertson

The Taj Mahal At Agra, 2020
101.6 x 152.4 cm
Photography

$650

Our recommendations Gerry Cranham, White Hart Lane, Photography

Gerry Cranham

White Hart Lane, 1964
40 x 60 cm
Photography

$1,721

Our recommendations Man Ray, Untitled Portrait of Female, Photography

Man Ray

Untitled Portrait of Female, 1940
25.7 x 26 cm
Photography

$3,000

François Maurel, Des Hommes et la Mer, Photography

François Maurel

Des Hommes et la Mer, 2020
30 x 45 cm
Photography

$975

Vincent Citot, Le piège de glace, Photography

Vincent Citot

Le piège de glace, 2019
50 x 75 x 1 cm
Photography

$1,004

Giana De Dier, The portal, Photography

Giana De Dier

The portal, 2021
33 x 26 x 1 cm
Photography

$1,606

Samuel Bourne, Hamta Pass Himalayas, Photography

Samuel Bourne

Hamta Pass Himalayas, 2020
76.2 x 101.6 cm
Photography

$472

Eric Chauvet, Corbeaux - Croix, Photography

Eric Chauvet

Corbeaux - Croix, 1984
30 x 30 x 0.5 cm
Photography

$195

Theo Arno, Vidas Huellas 79, Photography

Theo Arno

Vidas Huellas 79, 2020
30 x 45 x 0.5 cm
Photography

$195 $156

Felice Beato, Ram Bagh Gateway, Photography

Felice Beato

Ram Bagh Gateway, 2020
50.8 x 61 cm
Photography

$725

Helmut Newton, 16th Arrondissement, Paris 1976, Photography

Helmut Newton

16th Arrondissement, Paris 1976, 1980
41 x 27 cm
Photography

$1,021

Demïr Özgül, L'envol, Photography

Demïr Özgül

L'envol, 2019
50 x 50 x 1 cm
Photography

$975

Shérazade (Sher) Auclair, connexion, Photography

Shérazade (Sher) Auclair

connexion, 2019
50 x 70 cm
Photography

$1,549

Sébastien Castillo, Paysage 1, Photography

Sébastien Castillo

Paysage 1, 2015
40 x 60 x 1 cm
Photography

$711

Our recommendations James Sparshatt, Maiden of Tsonga, Photography

James Sparshatt

Maiden of Tsonga, 2004
40 x 50 cm
Photography

$797

Claire Giraudeau, Urbain brutalisme -  digigraphie, Photography

Claire Giraudeau

Urbain brutalisme - digigraphie, 2021
70 x 50 cm
Photography

$344

Our recommendations Robert Mapplethorpe, Bill T. Jones, Photography

Robert Mapplethorpe

Bill T. Jones, 1985
50.2 x 40 x 0.3 cm
Photography

$45,000

Anthony Godet, Serie "Les sacrés" Sacré vent!, Photography

Anthony Godet

Serie "Les sacrés" Sacré vent!, 2021
47 x 50 cm
Photography

$1,021

Willy Ronis, Cave rue de la Huchette, Saint Germain, Photography

Willy Ronis

Cave rue de la Huchette, Saint Germain, 1957
30 x 40 x 1 cm
Photography

$1,721

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
Photography

$12,000

Miguel Winograd, Bosque Tropical Húmedo Nuquí, Photography

Miguel Winograd

Bosque Tropical Húmedo Nuquí, 2021
31.8 x 25.4 x 0.3 cm
Photography

$500

Our recommendations Roger Ballen, Spooky Eyes, Photography

Roger Ballen

Spooky Eyes, 2012
36 x 24 x 2 cm
Photography

$2,294

Our recommendations Chema Madoz, Untitled, Photography

Chema Madoz

Untitled, 1985
60 x 50 cm
Photography

$4,818

Our recommendations John Kenny, Kashi, Photography

John Kenny

Kashi, 2014
67 x 45 x 2 cm
Photography

$1,319

Our recommendations Diane Arbus, A Widow in Her Bedroom, 55th St, NYC, Photography

Diane Arbus

A Widow in Her Bedroom, 55th St, NYC, 1963
35.6 x 27.9 cm
Photography

$50,000

Our recommendations Cécile Baldewyns, Cooling Tour, Photography

Cécile Baldewyns

Cooling Tour, 2014
40 x 60 cm
Photography

$918

Joanna Chudy, Oblivion. Hidden identity., Photography

Joanna Chudy

Oblivion. Hidden identity., 2019
50 x 60 cm
Photography

$792

Our recommendations Catherine Balet, Looking for the Masters in Ricardo's Golden Shoes #52 (Tribute to William Klein), Photography

Catherine Balet

Looking for the Masters in Ricardo's Golden Shoes #52 (Tribute to William Klein), 2016
24 x 30 x 4 cm
Photography

$1,032

Our recommendations Théo Gosselin, Lost and Found, Photography

Théo Gosselin

Lost and Found, 2019
20 x 30 x 3 cm
Photography

$401

Our recommendations Elliott Erwitt, Untitled, Photography

Elliott Erwitt

Untitled, 2000
40 x 57 x 1 cm
Photography

$2,293

Our recommendations Brno Del Zou, Tiphaine #2, Photography

Brno Del Zou

Tiphaine #2, 2013
100 x 90 x 16 cm
Photography

$4,130

Our recommendations Alessandro Puccinelli, Mare #3, Photography

Alessandro Puccinelli

Mare #3, 2005
50 x 50 x 4 cm
Photography

$2,065

Christopher Makos, Andy Warhol and Keith Haring, Photography

Christopher Makos

Andy Warhol and Keith Haring, 1983
38.1 x 48.3 cm
Photography

$4,500

Pierre Terrasson, Mick Jagger "le poing" Londres, Photography

Pierre Terrasson

Mick Jagger "le poing" Londres, 1987
50 x 40 cm
Photography

$1,147

Samuel Cueto, Silence, Photography

Samuel Cueto

Silence, 2014
50 x 40 cm
Photography

$1,032

Karol Kállay, Down on East River, Photography

Karol Kállay

Down on East River, 1965
30 x 30 cm
Photography

$1,262

Mihaela Ivanova, Shadowfax, Photography

Mihaela Ivanova

Shadowfax, 2012
50 x 50 x 0.2 cm
Photography

$562 $506

Our recommendations Linda Tuloup, #3, Photography

Linda Tuloup

#3, 2021
24 x 30 x 1 cm
Photography

$1,560

Our recommendations Walker Evans, Burroughs Family, Alabama, Photography

Walker Evans

Burroughs Family, Alabama, 1936
27.9 x 28.6 cm
Photography

$5,000

Our recommendations Sébastien Chauchot, Céréales 3, Photography

Sébastien Chauchot

Céréales 3, 2019
40 x 35 x 1 cm
Photography

$401

Our recommendations Pierre Schwartz, Victoire Montmorency, Photography

Pierre Schwartz

Victoire Montmorency, 2010
80 x 80 cm
Photography

$918

Our recommendations Horst P. Horst, Istanbul - Untitled #4, Photography

Horst P. Horst

Istanbul - Untitled #4, 1954
39.9 x 39.9 x 0.3 cm
Photography

$1,700

Robert Longo, Gabriel's Wing, Photography

Robert Longo

Gabriel's Wing, 2016
81 x 132 x 1 cm
Photography

$25,236

Our recommendations Daniel Giry, Miss K7, Photography

Daniel Giry

Miss K7, 2016
60 x 90 x 3 cm
Photography

$1,943

Our recommendations Cristina Aldehuela, Lelo 1, Photography

Cristina Aldehuela

Lelo 1, 2014
40 x 60 x 0.1 cm
Photography

$1,491

Our recommendations Louis Blanc, TEstacEus, Photography

Louis Blanc

TEstacEus, 2011
100 x 100 x 0.3 cm
Photography

$2,065

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

Karine Paoli

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

$2,294

Warwick Saint, Neck Tattoo, Photography

Warwick Saint

Neck Tattoo, 2010
78.7 x 63.5 cm
Photography

$1,800

Our recommendations Jorg Karg, Weight on their Shoulders - Large Format, Photography

Jorg Karg

Weight on their Shoulders - Large Format, 2017
130 x 105 x 3 cm
Photography

$3,671

Our recommendations Serge Mendjisky, Statue de la Liberté HC, Photography

Serge Mendjisky

Statue de la Liberté HC, 2008
150 x 66 x 5 cm
Photography

$13,765

Maurice Tabard, Untitled (Solarized Landscape), Photography

Maurice Tabard

Untitled (Solarized Landscape), 1947
28.6 x 22.9 cm
Photography

$1,800

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