Photography

Cahun, Claude (1894 - 1954)

In the late 1910s, Lucy Schwob borrows her great-uncle’s surname and becomes Claude Cahun. The French photographer lately joins the Surrealist movement she strongly singularizes with her original and powerful works although she is seen as a marginal by the males of the group. What mainly remains are her self-portraits that diffuse an intimate, poetic and autobiographical feel while they also establish an innovative approach. With her own image, Claude Cahun reinvents the concept of the self, recreating her identity with masculine as well as feminine costumes, wigs and make-up, a precursory performance that erases genres to build a unique unclassifiable human type - ‘Masculine, feminine. It depends. Neutral is the genre that suits me best’ - Her surrealist photomontages that feature bizarre scenographies around everyday objects there again annihilate the original meaning to focus on the imagination and transformation. Claude Cahun’s whole production symbolizes absence and mystery. Revolutionary in her work, the photographer also was in her personal life: a libertarian that refused conventions and assumed her homosexuality and political ideas. André Breton once said she defended her ideas like a man but that sounds too simplistic, too misogynous…Claude Cahun simply fought for her individuality.

Claude Cahun, Untitled, 1928
Claude Cahun, Untitled, 1928
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1920
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1920
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1912
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1912
Claude Cahun, Lucie and Kid, 1926
Claude Cahun, Lucie and Kid, 1926
Claude Cahun, What Do You Want from Me?, 1928
Claude Cahun, What Do You Want from Me?, 1928
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1929
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1929
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1921
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1921
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1928
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1928
Claude Cahun, Untitled, 1936-1939
Claude Cahun, Untitled, 1936-1939
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait at the window, 1938
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait at the window, 1938
Claude Cahun, Self Portrait in Sailor Hat, 1920
Claude Cahun, Self Portrait in Sailor Hat, 1920
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1927
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1927
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait in winter, 1939-1940
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait in winter, 1939-1940
Claude Cahun, Untitled, 1936
Claude Cahun, Untitled, 1936
Claude Cahun, Aveux Non Avenus. Paris: Éditions du Carrefour, 1930
Claude Cahun, Aveux Non Avenus. Paris: Éditions du Carrefour, 1930
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1927
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1927
Claude Cahun, Rendent hélas éternels, 1936
Claude Cahun, Rendent hélas éternels, 1936
Claude Cahun, Flowers Hours, 1936
Claude Cahun, Flowers Hours, 1936
Claude Cahun, Cherchez la femme, 1936
Claude Cahun, Cherchez la femme, 1936
Claude Cahun, I extend my arms, 1931
Claude Cahun, I extend my arms, 1931
Claude Cahun, Solange Roussot in
Claude Cahun, Solange Roussot in "Barbe Bleue", 1929
Claude Cahun, Untitled, 1927
Claude Cahun, Untitled, 1927
Claude Cahun, I am training, don’t kiss me, 1927
Claude Cahun, I am training, don’t kiss me, 1927
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1932
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1932
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1947
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1947
Claude Cahun, Portrait of André Gide by Benjamin Peret, 1936
Claude Cahun, Portrait of André Gide by Benjamin Peret, 1936
Claude Cahun, Untitled, 1936
Claude Cahun, Untitled, 1936
Claude Cahun, Crystal heads, British Museum, 1936
Claude Cahun, Crystal heads, British Museum, 1936
Claude Cahun, Untitled, 1936
Claude Cahun, Untitled, 1936
Claude Cahun, Untitled, 1936
Claude Cahun, Untitled, 1936
Claude Cahun, Hands and Table, 1936
Claude Cahun, Hands and Table, 1936
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1939
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1939
Claude Cahun, Untitled, 1921-1922
Claude Cahun, Untitled, 1921-1922
Claude Cahun and Marcel Moore, Self- Portraits Reflected in a Mirror. c. 1920
Claude Cahun and Marcel Moore, Self- Portraits Reflected in a Mirror. c. 1920
Claude Cahun, Self-portrait, Mask, c. 1929
Claude Cahun, Self-portrait, Mask, c. 1929
Claude Cahun, Prends un petit bâton pointu, 1936
Claude Cahun, Prends un petit bâton pointu, 1936
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1927
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1927
Claude Cahun, Pour que tu vives une heure, 1936
Claude Cahun, Pour que tu vives une heure, 1936
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1925
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1925
Claude Cahun, Untitled, 1936
Claude Cahun, Untitled, 1936
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1929
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1929
Claude Cahun, Aveux Non Avenus. Paris: Éditions du Carrefour, 1930
Claude Cahun, Aveux Non Avenus. Paris: Éditions du Carrefour, 1930
Claude Cahun, Aveux Non Avenus. Paris: Éditions du Carrefour, 1930
Claude Cahun, Aveux Non Avenus. Paris: Éditions du Carrefour, 1930
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1927
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1927
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1945
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1945
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1931
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1931
Claude Cahun, The Father, 1932
Claude Cahun, The Father, 1932
Claude Cahun, Aveux Non Avenus. Paris: Éditions du Carrefour, 1930
Claude Cahun, Aveux Non Avenus. Paris: Éditions du Carrefour, 1930
Claude Cahun, Combat de pierre, 1931
Claude Cahun, Combat de pierre, 1931
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1939
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1939
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1928
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1928
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait against granite wall,1916
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait against granite wall,1916
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1929
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1929
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1929
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1929
Claude Cahun, Standing and Sitting in a garden, Claude Cahun and Marcel Moore, 1939
Claude Cahun, Standing and Sitting in a garden, Claude Cahun and Marcel Moore, 1939
Claude Cahun, Portrait of Henri Michaux, 1925
Claude Cahun, Portrait of Henri Michaux, 1925
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1928
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1928
Claude Cahun, Untitled Photomontage, 1936
Claude Cahun, Untitled Photomontage, 1936
Claude Cahun, Aveux Non Avenus. Paris: Éditions du Carrefour, 1930
Claude Cahun, Aveux Non Avenus. Paris: Éditions du Carrefour, 1930
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, Le Croisic, 1921
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, Le Croisic, 1921
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1926
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1926
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1920
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1920
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1927
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1927
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1920s
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1920s
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1927
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1927
Claude Cahun and Roger Roussot in
Claude Cahun and Roger Roussot in "Barbe Bleu", March–May 1929
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1929
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1929
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1929
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1929
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1928
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1928
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1928
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1928
Claude Cahun, Portrait of Marcel Moore, 1928
Claude Cahun, Portrait of Marcel Moore, 1928
Claude Cahun, Cajun as Monsieur in Banlieu, 1920
Claude Cahun, Cajun as Monsieur in Banlieu, 1920
Claude Cahun as Le Diable and Roger Roussot as Adam in
Claude Cahun as Le Diable and Roger Roussot as Adam in "Le Mystère d'Adam", May–June 1929
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1929
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1929
Claude Cahun, Aveux Non Avenus. Paris: Éditions du Carrefour, 1930
Claude Cahun, Aveux Non Avenus. Paris: Éditions du Carrefour, 1930
Claude Cahun, La vitrine de chaussures, 1936
Claude Cahun, La vitrine de chaussures, 1936
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1928
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1928
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1939
Claude Cahun, Self-Portrait, 1939
Claude Cahun, Aveux Non Avenus. Paris: Éditions du Carrefour, 1930
Claude Cahun, Aveux Non Avenus. Paris: Éditions du Carrefour, 1930
Claude Cahun, Untitled, 1925
Claude Cahun, Untitled, 1925
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