Nun, 1921
© Die Photographische Sammlung/SK Stiftung Kultur - August Sander Archiv, Köln/VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn and DACS, London 2015

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Nun, 1921 1921
  • Artist Rooms
August Sander photographed this nun standing outside in the Westerwald region, a tree-lined country road receding into the distance behind her. The image is included in the portfolio entitled ‘Occupation’, within the group ‘The Woman’ in August Sander’s documentary project ‘People of the 20th Century’. Including over 500 images, the project was conceived as a typology of the German people, categorised according to their professions, estates and living environments. This full-frontal portrait is closely framed as though we are meeting the nun face-to-face on the road. A rosary hangs from her waist beside her lowered left hand, while her right hand clasps a bible to her side. Her face is elongated into a narrow oval by her wimple, a shape echoed by the silver medallion lying on the severely starched white linen of her dress, against which the flesh of her face is thrown into strong contrast.


  • Acc. No. AL00123
  • Medium Black and white photograph on paper
  • Size 26.00 x 19.40 cm (paper 43.90 x 33.90 cm; mount: 46.00 x 36.00 cm) (framed: 48.20 x 38.20 x 3.20 cm)
  • Credit ARTIST ROOMS National Galleries of Scotland and Tate. Lent by Anthony d'Offay 2010