Edward Steichen Balzac, the Silhouette, 4 a.m 1908; published 1911 © Estate of Edward Steichen. Artists' Right Society (ARS), New York and DACS, London 2022.


Born 1879
Died 1973
Nationality American
Birth place LU
Death place Redding

One of the greatest photographers of his generation, Steichen was born in Luxembourg, before his family emigrated to the U.S.A. in 1881. He lived in Paris for several years between 1906 and 1919, where the work of Symbolist and Impressionist painting influenced his aesthetic. Although his career was interrupted by the two World Wars -serving as commander of the photographic division of the U.S. Army Expeditionary and commander of all naval combat photography, respectively - Steichen was incredibly successful in his field. As Chief of Photography at Condé Nast Publications for thirteen years, his portraits in ‘Vogue’ and ‘Vanity Fair’ set a new standard in printed photography. From 1947-63 he was the first curator of photography at The Museum of Modern Art in New York.

Glossary terms

Glossary terms


A nineteenth century movement among photographers who explored the artistic potential of the new technology, looking to paintings for stylistic models.