Catholic Priest, 1927
© Die Photographische Sammlung/SK Stiftung Kultur - August Sander Archiv, Köln/VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn and DACS, London 2014

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Catholic Priest, 1927 1927
  • Artist Rooms
The first portrait in the portfolio entitled ‘The Clergyman’ within the group ‘Classes and Professions’ in August Sander’s project ‘People of the 20th Century’ shows a Catholic priest leaning on the back of a chair wearing a soutane and cap. Sander divided 500 photographs into seven groups, made up of over 45 portfolios classified according to the estates, professions and living environments of the German people. Photographed in Cologne, the priest was probably an acquaintance of Sander’s. His pose – leaning casually against the back of a chair – and his genial expression suggest a dynamic personality and an easy communication with the photographer. Framed against a flat white background, his dark figure is removed from the formal environment of his chapel, suggesting a more intimate moment in his daily life.


  • Acc. No. AL00072
  • Medium Black and white photograph on paper
  • Size 25.90 x 18.80 cm (paper 44.00 x 34.00 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