Bowdoin College Museum of Art

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Image of Paracelsus 11483

1996.66

Artist

Frederick Sommer

Title

Paracelsus

Creation Date

1957

Century

20th century

Dimensions

13 1/2 in. x 10 1/16 in. (34.29 cm. x 25.56 cm.)

Object Type

photograph

Creation Place

North America, American

Medium and Support

gelatin silver print

Credit Line

Museum Purchase, Lloyd O. and Marjorie Strong Coulter Fund

Copyright

This artwork may be under copyright. For further information, please consult the Museum’s Copyright Terms and Conditions.

Accession Number

1996.66
Frederick Sommer experimented extensively with man-made negatives. In one series he made negatives out of paint applied to cellophane, which he would manipulate and peel as it dried. In Paracelsus, those liquid gestures make up the silhouette of a woman’s torso. Sommer named this work after an influential sixteenth-century physician. Considered the father of modern psychology for his early recognition of the unconscious, Paracelsus was a figure of great fascination to the surrealists, who translated and published his writings in their journals.

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